How often should I have an eye exam?

We recommend that everyone have their eyes examined every year for two reasons: clear vision and healthy eyes. The first reason is obvious. But what people often fail to consider is that eye health problems can develop without any symptoms. An eye doctor can detect diseases (glaucoma, cataracts, macular degeneration, etc.) long before people realize they’ve lost some vision. Even people who think they see clearly are often surprised at what they’ve been missing.

When should I bring my children in for their first eye exam?

The American Optometric Association recommends the following:

  • First basic exam at 12 months, to ensure proper development and to rule out any birth-related issues.
  • First comprehensive exam at 3.5 years.
  • Then, before kindergarten and every year thereafter.

What will happen at my eye exam?

Our doctors perform a thorough check of both your vision and your ocular health. Generally, our exams follow these steps:

  • The doctor will perform computerized testing to check your field of vision, to get an estimate of your prescription, and to measure the pressure inside your eyes.
  • The doctor will ask about your vision to determine if you are having any symptoms or difficulties. He will also ask if you’ve ever worn glasses or contacts and for what purpose.
  • Next, the doctor will see how well you can see, then present you with a series of lenses and asking you to compare two at a time to determine which lens combinations help you to see the clearest. With this information he will be able to determine your prescription for both distance viewing and for reading.
  • Then, the doctor will look inside your eyes to assess their health and to determine if you have any eye diseases or are at risk for developing any.
  • Lastly, the doctor will present your results to you and make any necessary recommendations (glasses, contacts, or referral to a higher-level specialist).

When can I come in and how long will it take?

We are open:

  • Monday: 9am – 5pm
  • Tuesday: 9am – 5pm
  • Wednesday: 9am – 6pm
  • Thursday: 9am – 5pm
  • Friday: 9am – 4pm
  • Saturday: By Appt. Only
  • Sunday: Closed

On average, your exam will last between 40-50 minutes. Plan additional time for picking out new glasses!

Can I put new lenses in my own frame?

In general, yes you can. Though we always advise getting a new frame with your new lenses – that way your frame is warranted for a year against manufacturing defects and can be reordered if you break it. Old frames are often discontinued and can’t be replaced if broken. Also, keep in mind that if your frame is on it’s last leg, it might break when trying to put new lenses in it! Some non-prescription frames aren’t meant to accept prescription lenses.

Is it safe for me to drive home after an eye exam?

During the exam we may have to dilate your pupils, which will make your eyes sensitive to light, and slightly distort your vision. These effects are normal, and usually subside within a few hours. You should plan to bring something to shield the sun from your eyes after your appointment, such as sunglasses or a wide-brimmed hat. If you feel you will be unable to drive after the appointment, please bring someone with you to drive you home.

If I have an eye infection, or something in my eye, should I go see you or my “regular” doctor?

You should see us! Optometrists are doctors whose education and clinical experience deal almost entirely with the human eye – we are the eye experts. We are licensed to diagnose and manage all ordinary eye infections and diseases, including prescribing eye drops and oral medications if necessary. In addition, we have instruments in our office that are made exclusively for examining the eye.

Will wearing glasses make my eyes get worse?

In short, no, it will not. Wearing your correct prescription is ideal for your eyes – they are less likely to strain when they see clearly. The only time glasses can cause the eyes to get worse is if they are made incorrectly, i.e. too strong, for someone whose eyes are still developing (children or young teens). You may find that once you start wearing your glasses, you’ll want to wear them more often – but that’s just because you like seeing clearly!

What is a cataract?

A cataract is a clouding of the lens in the eye. Although cataracts are not painful, they do cause many symptoms, such as blurry vision. Surgery is the only treatment option. Following diagnosis, Dr. Taylor can refer you to a specialist who will remove your cataracts and place intraocular lenses to restore your vision.

What is glaucoma?

Glaucoma is a disorder that damages the optic nerve, which sends visual information from the eye to the brain. The condition typically occurs as a result of high fluid pressure inside the eye (called intraocular pressure). This happens when aqueous humor, a clear liquid that continuously flows in and out of the eye does not flow properly. The fluid typically flows out through a drainage system; at the angle where the iris and the cornea meet. If the system fails to function properly, the fluid cannot exit the eye at a normal rate, which causes pressure to build up. Left untreated, vision progressively deteriorates; resulting in blindness.

What are some risk factors for developing glaucoma?

Although anyone can experience glaucoma, the condition is more prevalent among persons with a family history of the condition, adults older than 65, diabetic patients, and African-Americans over 40. Nearsighted individuals, persons with high blood pressure, and those who take steroid medicines for a long period of time are also more likely to develop glaucoma.

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