It is interesting how seriously we take some portions of our health while we allow other aspects go virtually unnoticed. Many women for example wouldn't dream of going longer than two months without a haircut to keep the tips looking healthy and fresh, the same goes for men when it comes to length. We will try to eat right, exercise, take blood tests, and go to the doctor for the common cold, but yet a simple annual checkup with the optometrist is one of those things that people tend to put off. One of the main reasons perhaps is that while our sight appears fine, many of us don't feel that there is a need or reason to schedule an appointment, or only inquire about something once it becomes a bother. But much like an iceberg, by the time you discover there's trouble there's already a lot more building underneath. Going for a regular optical exam
can be the difference between a lifetime of seeing things, or being confined to just hearing about them. Here are a few afflictions the optometrist can detect and treat
before they get worse that you may not have considered:
Glaucoma – This is a disease in which the optic nerve is damaged by increased fluid pressure. There are two types: "closed-angle” which can come on quite quickly and cause enough discomfort that one would go in for a checkup; and "open-angle” which can progress over a longer period of time. With "open-angle” glaucoma it can remain unnoticed by someone until the problems has developed to a point where treatment becomes difficult to administer, if at all.
– Think of the eye like a lens which reflects light and projects an image into our retina. In youth this lens is capable of adjusting to allow us to see clearly objects which are close or which are far away, however as we age, a cloudy film can begin to deposit. Although the affliction is primarily related to aging, it can also be found in younger people, many of whom think their failing vision is caused by something far less severe and don't seek treatment. If left undiagnosed, cataracts can form to the point of blindness. Conversely, an optometrist would be able to easily diagnose
this problem and recommend an optical surgeon who can handle it with ease.
Floaters and Flashers – These sound relatively harmless, and in their early stages they are. Floaters are tiny clumps of cells which float through the moist layer of our eyes. We think we see them as spots in front of our face, but actually they are behind the eye. Flashers are more severe, like when we hit our head and see "stars”. This is actually the result of tiny tears in the tissue, and if left untreated can cause major complications. Both of these problems caught early on are easily treatable, but if left for long periods of time can become far more difficult to rectify.
Your eyes are your windows to the world around you, and when your windows get dirty you have them cleaned. Make an appointment with a local optometrist today – they might just be a sight for sore eyes.