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May Is Healthy Vision Month-schedule an annual eye exam

I have seen some interesting stuff over the past few years.( Interesting is the politically correct way of saying what some younger folks refer to as “cray-cray”) I say interesting because we only have one set of eyes and most of our activities of daily living (ADL) are done with our eyes. Don’t believe me? Close your eyes and finish reading my blog. Then get up (with eyes closed) go outside and walk the dog….. Yet many people ignore simple things that can maintain healthy eyes and vision.

Call me a fanatic but I think that vision is one of the most taken-for-granted senses and generally it just takes one visit a year to your eye care professional to make sure it is ok.

Wonder what kind of stuff I have seen and heard?

I have had patients tell me that they’ve worn the same set of contact lenses continuously for one year, that’s right they never took them off their eyes for 365 days.

I have had patients come in saying that something is wrong with their contacts. They have a raging eye infection because they never clean their contact lenses. It’s kinda like never cleaning your tooth brush.

I have had diabetic patients who have not had a dilated eye exam for 6 or more years.

I have had patients with diabetic retinopathy who refused follow-up appointments for sight-saving treatments. Ditto some glaucoma patients.

I have had dry eye patients who say they have gritty feeling but won’t use lubricant drops, saying “I’ll get used to it”.

I have had patients deny having a problem, they drive to the office and say “I see fine “, then only read the big E on the chart…..

So the first thing in keeping your eyes healthy is to have an annual eye exam.

The second thing is listen to your doctor. Eye care professionals are here to help. Our goal is prevention or early diagnosis of ocular disease. We can make sense out vague complaints. We see signs that have no symptoms.

For other ways to maintain ocular health, see some of my other blogs. You can also check out The National Eye Institutes’s website, www.nei.nih.gov for more information on your eyes and eye health.

WE ,the patient and the doctors, are partners in maintaining your eye health. The doctors are counting on you,the patient, to do your part.