WHAT IS AN Eye Exam?
The majority of people are familiar with general vision acuity tests and have likely received one at some point. Kids often have acuity tests at school, and adults might be asked to take one for their job. Vision exams are also performed when a person needs a new driver's license. Be that as it may, having good eyesight doesn't necessarily mean that your eyes are free of disease and abnormalities. A visual acuity test doesn't always provide an accurate view of your overall ocular health. For that reason, having a thorough eye exam every two years is important for your overall wellness.
At The Eye Center of Central PA, comprehensive eye evaluations involve multiple, important testing capabilities that allow our team of board-certified eye doctors to examine your total eye health. These tests are especially important since many serious, vision-threatening disorders, like macular degeneration, don't cause any obvious symptoms to manifest.
Stay on top of your eye health by scheduling biennial appointments with our a member of our team at one of our locations throughout Central PA. It's particularly important to visit an ophthalmologist if it has been over two years since your latest comprehensive eye exam or if you have noticed any issues with your eyes or changes in your vision.
WHO needs an EYE EXAM?
Receiving comprehensive eye exams on a consistent schedule is essential for everyone, even if you haven't noticed a change in your sight or other symptoms, such as discomfort. Patients who are 18 – 40 years of age need to have their eyes assessed every two years. People in their 40s and beyond should receive eye assessments roughly every 2 – 4 years. Thorough eye evaluations can also identify other major yet manageable medical problems, such as injury to the retina, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Families should also remember that it's important to set up comprehensive eye exams for their children. Studies have revealed that one-fourth of students have a vision issue. According to the American Optometric Association (AOA), babies need to have their initial ocular exam at around six months old and go again just before starting school. Experts suggest that children have their eyes checked every other year, regardless of whether or not they seem to have no difficulty seeing. Regular eye checks are especially important because of the current extreme rise in nearsightedness (myopia). This increase is being caused by students using mobile devices at a never-before-seen rate.
"My Eye Center visit hit a glitch. It was taken care of in a quick professional manner. Dr Gonzales is knowledgeable, quick and very positive. Kudos to C. Yingling in the Optical Shop!!! Excellent Customer Service!!!"- L.W. / Google / Jun 18, 2020
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"Excellent surgeon"- P. / Healthgrades / Feb 14, 2020
What To Expect
When you come in for your appointment, you should bring your contact lenses and eyeglasses and an up-to-date list of any prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs you're taking. Typically, eye exams at The Eye Center of Central PA take about an hour. Your exam will begin with a routine vision test to determine how sharp your sight is. If it establishes that you need corrective lenses, we will administer refraction testing to figure out what your lens prescription should be. To do this, you will look into a view-finder machine to determine what objects you see as clear or blurry. Then, we will perform a visual field test, often referred to as a Tangent screen exam, which measures the degree of your peripheral vision, as well as helps in spotting certain other eye conditions.
Next, we will test the alignment of your eyes with a cover test. Just like its name suggests, we cover your eyes, one at a time, and have you look at an object, which allows us to see how your eyes move. We may also have you keep your head still and follow a small light using just your eyes. After this, we will typically conduct a test that spots color vision deficiencies and helps in finding other eye problems. Finally, we will do a slit lamp test to get an enlarged, full-aspect 3D view of the front of your eyes, such as the upper and lower lids, cornea, conjunctiva, iris, and lenses.
It can be beneficial to dilate the pupils to clearly assess the condition of the retina, retinal blood vessels, optic nerve, and the macula, and to look for signs of glaucoma. Your doctor may need to dilate your pupils to complete other tests, depending on your age and your reason for having the exam.
Special Diagnostic Exams
At The Eye Center of Central PA, our team is pleased to offer specialized diagnostic testing for those who have developed or have an enhanced potential for certain serious eye problems, like glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy. With almost all eye conditions, early discovery and diagnosis are crucial to effective intervention. This is why having periodic comprehensive eye exams is quite important.
- Glaucoma: To spot and identify glaucoma, our team can carry out more tests beyond those included in the comprehensive exam. These most often include the air puff (tonometry) test to gauge your internal eye pressure, as well as the pachymetry test to gauge the thickness of your cornea.
- Diabetic retinopathy and macular edema: If we determine that you may be at risk for diabetic retinopathy or macular edema, we will have to enlarge your pupils with eye drops to get an unobstructed view of your retina. Dilation allows us to thoroughly inspect for any deterioration of the retina and weakening of the retinal blood vessels. We might also recommend a fluorescein angiography. This is a simple, minimally invasive test in which one of our eye doctors will administer a unique dye into your arm so that it can be transported briefly into the retinal blood vessels. This test helps us get a very clear image of how the vessels are doing.
In many cases, the detection of retinal damage is a patient's initial indication that they have diabetes. In other cases, it can be an indication that they aren't managing their diabetes as well as they need to be. Because of this, it's important to consistently receive testing for diabetic retinopathy, even if you haven't been told you have diabetes.
After your comprehensive eye exam is finished, your next evaluation can be scheduled here at our office. Certain factors, such as your age, vision acuity, and health factors that could impact your ocular wellness, will help us determine how frequently you should receive an assessment. Even patients who regularly have healthy results should continue to schedule eye exams every 2 – 4 years. That way, if any problems do form, they will be caught and addressed quickly. You might need to schedule a follow-up appointment for more testing or treatment if we identify any signs of a possible problem. Keep in mind that if we need to dilate your pupils, you may have to bring someone to drive you home after your appointment.
MAINTAIN your Eye Health
A lot of the time, people don't worry about their eyes until a vision problem becomes obvious. But the health of our eyes goes way beyond visual acuity. We are excited for you to set up comprehensive eye health exams for your whole family with our board-certified team of eye doctors at one of our Central PA locations. The Eye Center of Central PA utilizes innovative equipment and methods to examine your eyes to see to it that any concerns can be detected and treated as soon as possible.