It’s healthy vision month, and now is the time for a comprehensive dilated eye exam. While you may think eye exams are just to check your vision, they also allow doctors insight into your general health, too.

CEENTA Ophthalmologist Timothy Saunders, MD

“Comprehensive eye examinations are important from childhood through adulthood,” CEENTA Ophthalmologist Timothy Saunders, MD, said. “Our comprehensive team of eye care specialists provides the latest care for a wide variety of eye conditions.”

See clearly again

The doctor will, of course, check your vision to see if you need glasses or if your prescription should be changed if you already wear corrective lenses. You will be given a visual acuity test, which is the traditional eye chart used to see how well you can see at various distances. Doctors will also sometimes give visual field tests to measure peripheral vision.

If you now need glasses or your vision has changed, your doctor will give you a prescription for new corrective lenses. CEENTA has optical shops in each of the locations we offer eye exams, so once your exam is done you can get fitted for new glasses. We only purchase the latest eyewear from top-quality manufacturers who do not cut corners on the production of your new glasses. Prices are extremely competitive, and we offer free warranties to patients.

More than just your vision

A comprehensive dilated eye exam also allows your doctor to check your eyes for a variety of conditions that could affect your vision or your general health.

During a dilated eye exam, drops are placed in your eye that widen the pupil and give a better view of the back of your eye. A magnifying lens is used to examine the back of the eye, including the retina, the macula, and the optic nerve.

These comprehensive exams can detect a number of issues, such as glaucoma. Glaucoma is an optic nerve disease in which the nerve fibers that transmit images from your eye to the brain are damaged. It can cause blind spots and vision loss if left untreated. It is often, but not always, caused by increased pressure in the eye when fluid cannot drain properly.

This exam can also detect age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This is the leading cause of blindness in the United States. It is one of the most common causes of poor vision after age 60, but can show up in people as early as their 40s and occurs more commonly in people with a family history of AMD. Dry AMD is caused by degeneration of the outer layers of the retina. Wet AMD is when abnormal blood vessels develop on or around the retina. Retinal damage can occur from leaking blood vessels.

Diabetic retinopathy is another condition a comprehensive eye exam can detect. It is the most common diabetic eye disease, and develops when blood vessels in the retina change, sometimes swelling and leaking fluid, or closing off completely. Leaking blood vessels can cause damage to your eyes that can be permanent. It’s important to detect this at an early stage so this can be prevented.

If you have any of these conditions, your doctor will discuss treatment options with you and help you develop a care plan. Early detection can help prevent more serious vision loss down the road.

Make your eye health a priority. Schedule a comprehensive exam today.

To make an appointment with Dr. Saunders or any of CEENTA’s ophthalmologists, call 704-295-3000.

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