How often should I
see an optometrist?
People often ask us, “How often should I get my eyes tested?”
At Dresden we say most people should see an optometrist every two years. Regular eye exams can identify the early signs of conditions that can be treated more effectively if spotted early. Your eyes are easy to ignore because they won’t always hurt if there’s a problem.
The World Health Organisation says about 80% of all vision impairment globally is avoidable. Regular eye checks can save your sight.
But, like most things, there are exceptions.
- young children
- Patients over the age of 65
- patients with certain health conditions (diabetes, hypertension, myopia)
- patients with a family history of eye disease
- patients who have a learning disability
For specific eye conditions that require closer monitoring, the interval between eye exams will be determined by the optometrist.
Want to know what happens in an eye exam? Check out our article here - https://dresden.vision/eye-health/eye-exams-explained/
What about my child's sight?
Children often don't complain about their sight, but they may show signs of not being able to see properly. According to Vision Australia, 60% of children identified as ‘problem learners’ need help with their vision.
Things to look out for include:
- sitting close to the TV
- holding objects very close to their face
- blinking a lot
- eye rubbing
- one eye turning in or out
- losing their place when reading
- having trouble copying words from the board
If you think your child is having any sort of sight problems, take them to an optometrist for further investigation.
Want an alternative view?
The Glaucoma Research Foundation Organisation says your eyes should be tested:
- before age 40, every two to four years
- from age 40 to age 54, every one to three years
- from age 55 to 64, every one to two years
- after age 65, every six to 12 months
Anyone with high risk factors should be tested every year or two after age 35.
The Blind Foundation in New Zealand says most people should have a routine eye check up with an optometrist every two years. But see an optometrist promptly you have an unexpected change in your vision, for example:
- a shadow falling across your vision
- a straight edge, such as door frame looks wobbly
- bright flashes, or dark blotches in your vision that you have not noticed before
Then don’t wait for your next routine appointment, book a visit with your optometrist straight away. The optometrist will be able to examine your eyes and reassure you, begin treatment, or refer you on for specialist help if needed.
What else can I do to look after my eyes?
Diets high in antioxidants (such as from green leafy vegetables), Omega 3 fatty acids (such as from fish, linseeds), various vitamins (including Vitamins E and C) and minerals (including Zinc and Selenium) can help prevent or slow progression of macular degeneration in some people, according to Vision Australia, and also improve the quality of your tears to improve comfort and reduce dry eyes. Good eating habits combined with exercise help prevent diabetes, which is a significant cause of vision loss in Australia.
Don’t smoke. Smoking is strongly linked to macular degeneration and is also a cause of cardiovascular disease, which may affect the eyes and vision.