How To Tell If You Or Your Kids Need Glasses

"Do I Need Glasses?"

For many people, it's hard to tell if they, or their children need glasses. I love when I meet people outside the office, and when they learn I’m an optometrist, they ask “Do you think I need glasses?” Eye doctors are often thought of as just  for glasses, but we can do so much more! So when I'm asked that question, I get to educate them a little bit. And I’m excited to share that same information here!

Should I Have An Eye Exam?

I will always say yes!

A complete eye examination is the best way to tell if an adult or child needs glasses.

Even if your vision is fine now, an eye exam is not just to tell if you need glasses. We can tell so much about your overall health through an eye exam. Because early signs of health conditions (such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol, heart disease and cancer) can present in the eyes first before the entire body, we strongly encourage yearly eye examinations to ensure the body and eyes are functioning well.

Prevention is the key, as catching any early signs of health concerns helps ensure healthy vision and life for years to come. So yes, you do need regular eye exams, even if you see clearly.

Of course, we can also find if you need glasses. For adults, we can perform a refraction to see if prescriptions are needed for distance or near. We can even make computer glasses for those who use a computer for many hours each day.

Eye Exams for Children

For children, it is vital to ensure there is not a need for glasses. Often, a child can have reduced vision in one eye that goes unidentified for many years. This may lead to a permanent vision reduction if not caught soon enough. It always saddens me when I see teenagers or adults with poor vision that could have had clear vision in both eyes if glasses had been used sooner. We can also prescribe glasses for both children and adults to help eyes focus stronger together.

While yearly examinations are important for everyone, with and without symptoms, I have listed some common complaints below that can indicate an eye examination would be beneficial.

  • Eye strain at any time of day
  • Eye fatigue towards the end of the day or during the day
  • Your focus feels a little off, or you have to work to focus
  • Glare and/or halos around light sources
  • Blurred vision of distant or near objects
  • Colors appearing mildly different
  • Headaches at any time of the day
  • A tight, pulling feeling around your eyes
  • Not being able to function at work properly
  • Problems with activities, such as sports, hobbies or driving

All of these can indicate a need to have your eyes checked to ensure you’re not experiencing vision problems. But how could eye care affect your hobbies, or being productive at work?

Think of your eyes as the first part of the pathway to processing information. We must first visualize what we are taking in, and the nerves relay the message to the brain to interpret the visual message. If the eyes aren't seeing things correctly, the brain can’t process the information as clearly. This can lead to frustration and poor performance with any task, whether at the office, reading a book, playing on the golf course, driving or in the classroom. Simply ensuring yearly care can allow you to perform your best at all activities.

Overall Health Benefits Of An Eye Exam

The symptoms above may not be related to your vision, but a yearly eye exam will confirm or eliminate your ocular health as the cause – and with new technologies, like retinal photography, we can monitor your eye health over time to stay ahead of changes to your vision. And we really can find indicators of other health problems at the same time!

To learn more about retinal photography and regular eye exams, please take a minute to read about this wonderful technology here.

Whether or not you think you might need glasses, make an appointment today for an eye exam. They are covered by most every form of health insurance, it doesn't take long, and the benefits can be life changing.

We hope to hear from you soon!