As tragic and awful as it would be to lose a limb, you usually have the option of getting an artificial arm or leg. But vision…. once you have lost your eyesight, you have lost it. Most people worry more about losing their sight than any other sense, however, only a small minority of us bothers to get our vision checked yearly. Big mistake. Eye doctors recommend having an eye exam every one to two years if you are between the
ages of 18 and 65. You should get your eyes checked every year if you:
- Have a family history of eye disease
- Have health problems, such as high blood pressure, thyroid disease or arthritis
- Wear contact lenses
When you apply for an individual family plan or a senior health plan, you can also apply for vision care. The policies we carry at Insurance Medics are very inexpensive, have low or no deductibles and cover eye exams as well as lenses, frames and contacts. The most important part of an eye exam is actually checking the health of your eyes. You should have your pupils dilated, and the doctor should check for cataracts, glaucoma, dry eye syndrome, as well as a host of other conditions.
Dr. Larry Golson, an eye doctor in western North Carolina also advises his patients to have a retinal photo. When not covered by insurance the cost is $39.00. Dr. Golson thinks this is an important test because “I can tell if any changes in retinal appearance correspond with an active disease process.” He goes on to say that many eye diseases are painless and asymptomatic.
Poets will tell you that you can see a person’s soul by looking into their eyes. That may not be true but your eyes can provide valuable information about the health of the rest of your body. High cholesterol and diabetes may be discovered by looking at retinal blood vessels, and the optic nerve provides clues on everything from brain tumors to multiple sclerosis. Your eyes work very hard for you each and every day without you even thinking about it. They let you see rainbows and sunsets and the people you love. They let you cry when you are sad and make tears to protect themselves. When selecting an eye doctor be sure to pick one you feel comfortable with. Ophthalmologists are surgeons, so their focus is on medical/surgical eye care. Optometrists aren’t surgeons, so their focus is on medical/functional vision. Make sure you find someone who is easily accessible in case of an emergency.