During an eye exam Crescent Heights Optometrists evaluate many factors that can affect your vision and eye health. We review your case history, conduct an external and internal exam of your eyes, and measure vision qualities, such as eye movements and coordination, sharpness of vision and peripheral vision. Our optometrists also evaluate your ability to adjust focus, and to see colour and depth normally. If we detect problems, we may recommend glasses, contact lenses, exercises, medication or surgery.
Many serious eye conditions don’t have obvious symptoms. Some eye diseases only show symptoms when the condition is advanced and difficult, or even impossible, to treat. A comprehensive eye exam provides the full assurance of vision and eye health that a store sight test or a school vision screening cannot. A sight test can only determine a lens power by relying on a combination of computerized tests using automated equipment. These automated sight tests are not comprehensive or accurate and do nothing to determine if your eyes are healthy.
Babies should have their first eye examination between six and nine months to ensure their eyes are developing properly. Several conditions such as strabismus (crossed eyes) can be identified during the first eye exam. If left untreated these conditions can result in permanent visual problems.
At birth a babies ocular structures are not yet fully developed. During the first several months their visual perception expands and color vision along with stereopsis begins to develop. By six months a baby has acquired eye movement control and is able to coordinate eye hand movements.
As children age and begin to watch TV it is important to make TV viewing easier on the eyes. The room should be softly lit, the television should be placed to avoid glare and a child should sit further away than five times the screens width taking periodic breaks from starring at the screen.
Be alert for symptoms that may indicate your child has a visual problem:
rubbing the eyes
covering or closing one eye
holding objects too close
an eye that consistently turns in or out
avoiding books and television
red, itchy or watering eyes
sensitivity to light
a lack of concentration
irritability or short attention span
visible frustration or grimacing
Protect your child’s vision. If you notice any of these symptoms, you don’t need a referral to book an eye exam call for your appointment with one our optometrists today. All children 18 and under are covered for all eye examinations by Alberta Health Care.
For school-age children, several different visual skills must work together so they can see and understand clearly. If any of these visual skills are lacking or impaired, your child will need to work harder and may develop headaches or fatigue. Often the increased visual demands of schoolwork can make greater demands on a child’s visual skills, pointing out a vision problem that was not apparent before school. The child may not realize they have a vision problem they may simply assume everyone sees the way they do. A vision-related problem may cause some of the symptoms described below:
using a finger to maintain place while reading
tilting of the head or unusual posture
headaches or irritability
avoidance of near or distance work
covering or rubbing of the eyes
losing place while reading
omitting or confusing words when reading
performing below their potential
If you notice any of these symptoms, book an eye exam with one of our optometrists. Certain conditions such as Amblyopia occur when one eye has a much different prescription than the other or when the eyes are misaligned. The brain will “shut off” the image from the turned or blurry eye. If left untreated, amblyopia can stunt the visual development of the affected eye, resulting in permanent vision impairment. Amblyopia is often treated by patching the stronger eye for periods of time.
Adults and Seniors
As most people age, their vision needs change. A regular eye exam is an important part of maintaining your overall health and making your vision last a lifetime. Early identification and treatment of conditions that can often have no visible symptoms is key to protecting your sight. A number of eye conditions and diseases can threaten your sight, including:
Presbyopia: a natural effect of aging in which the ability to focus on close objects decreases over time. Presbyopia can cause headaches, blurred vision, and the need for more light while reading and sore eyes.
Cataracts: distorted or cloudy vision caused by the lens inside the eye losing its transparency over time. Cataracts can require changes to your glasses or surgical removal.
Diabetic Retinopathy: a weakening or swelling of the tiny blood vessels in the retina of your eye, and the growth of new blood vessels resulting in blood leakage and other changes. If diabetic retinopathy is left untreated, blindness can result.
Macular Degeneration: a disease that results in degenerative changes to your central vision, and is a leading cause of vision loss among older adults.
Glaucoma: a “silent thief” that often has no symptoms until significant damage has occurred. Glaucoma is caused by elevated pressure within the eye, and can lead to serious vision loss if not detected and treated at an early stage.
Please do not hesitate to ask our optometrists any questions about our findings or treatment plans. All seniors 65 yrs and over are covered for all eye examinations by Alberta Health Care.