Problems related to the eyes and vision have a very gradual onset. The only way to be certain of the condition of your eyes is with a comprehensive eye examination. An eye exam can tell you if something is wrong before you begin to feel any pain or experience redness, strain etc and can thus help you treat the problem in its earliest stages.
One of the most common reasons to schedule an eye examination is vision difficulty. Along with refractive errors such as near sightedness and far sightedness, here are a few other conditions that can be diagnosed through an eye exam.
This is condition where the eyes are misaligned or where one eye has a significantly higher refractive error than the other. Left untreated, this can result in permanent vision loss in the affected eye and worsen the refractive error in the other eye as well.
This condition is also known as crossed eyes. In such a case, both eyes look in different direction and do not focus on the same thing. It is caused by poor muscle control over the eyes and can lead to problems focusing on something and with the perception of depth and distance.
3. Eye diseases
Most diseases of the eye such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy have negligible symptoms in their early stages. The only way to correctly diagnose these is by taking a look at the inside of the eye which can be done only by a complete eye exam.
If you see floaters in your line of vision or flashes of light, scheduling an eye exam is essential. This can help diagnose problems such as retinal detachment or tears in the retina.
4. Other diseases
The eyes are commonly affected by health conditions such a high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes etc. In some cases, a detailed eye checkup can diagnose these problems even before you know you are suffering from them.
5. Age related conditions
With age, the muscles of the eye deteriorate as well. In many cases, this leads to difficulty reading and night blindness. Cataracts are also common eye problems that affect many elderly people. If diagnosed early enough most of these conditions can be treated but if left unattended they may lead to vision loss.
An eye exam should be scheduled once every alternate year. This is especially in the case of people over the age of 40 and in children up to the age of 18.