How a Simple Eye Exam Can Save Your Life

It’s hard to imagine that a simple eye exam could actually save your life, but it’s absolutely true. Deteriorating eyesight is a sign that something isn’t right, and it could be a serious, life-threatening condition, such as a brain tumor, causing the problems.

The next time you think about skipping your annual eye exam – either because you don’t think your eyesight has changed or because you have more contacts left over from your last visit – remember that an eye doctor visit is just as much for your overall health as it is for your eye health.

What is Done During a Routine Eye Exam?

When you go in for an annual exam, eye doctors run a series of tests to make sure that your eye is functioning properly and looks healthy. Aside from discussing your family history and any vision problems you are experiencing, a routine eye exam may include the following tests:

● Visual acuity test
● Eye muscle test
● Refraction assessment
● Visual field test
● Color vision testing
● Retinal examination
● Slit-lamp examination
● Glaucoma screening

What Signs May Indicate Something Serious?

Many conditions can be seen during an eye exam, such as age-related macular degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma. But there are other conditions that can affect your overall health that can be diagnosed during a yearly eye exam with an ophthalmologist doctor. Eye specialists look for:

Bloody Eye. There are teeny, tiny blood vessels running through the white part of the eye, and they can bleed. If the eye doctor sees a pool of blood in the eye, it’s an indication of a platelet disorder or high blood pressure, which can lead to a heart attack.

Droopy Eyelid. Droopy eyelids can mean a couple of things. It could be an indication of a brain tumor or a symptom of a serious neuromuscular disease. However, droopy eyelids can also be a normal part of aging.

Rings on the Cornea. A fatal disease called Wilson’s Disease can generate rings on the cornea. Though the rings are harmless, the disease can be very serious because it creates a buildup of copper in the body.

People say that the eyes are windows to the soul, and that’s actually a rather factual statement. The eyes go deep and are an instrumental part of your overall health and wellness. By seeing the eye doctor each year for a routine eye exam, you can literally save your life!