Understanding How A Routine Adult Eye Exam Could Save Your Life


Routine adult eye exams are a great way to keep your vision healthy. An optometrist can identify issues and recommend vision exercises, glasses, or contacts if needed. Believe it or not, a routine eye exam can also save your life. An optometrist can detect some illnesses or diseases based on the condition of your eyes. 

Brain Tumor

Many things can cause vision changes. For instance, the older you get, the weaker your eyes become, which can cause your vision to change. Injuries to the eye can also affect your eyesight. However, certain brain tumors can affect your eyesight. That is not to say that changes to your vision indicate the presence of a tumor.

That being said, an optometrist can sometimes detect the presence of a brain tumor before you experience any symptoms. A brain tumor can cause optic disc swelling, putting pressure on the optic nerve. Make sure you visit an optometrist for an eye exam if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Blurred vision
  • Seeing double
  • Persistent or severe headaches
  • Loss of vision
  • Abnormal movements of the eye

High Cholesterol

Among all the conditions an optometrist can identify during an eye exam, high cholesterol is one of the easiest. A buildup of cholesterol deposits may appear at the front of the eye in the form of a thin, gray ring called arcus senilis found on the iris. Your optometrist may be able to spot the signs of high cholesterol through your eye exam before you receive a diagnosis.

Just because your eyes indicate high cholesterol does not mean you should skip visiting your primary care physician. If your eye doctor suggests the presence of arcus senilis, book an appointment with your PCP to determine if you are suffering from high cholesterol.

Heart Disease

Another major health complication an eye exam can reveal is heart disease. Unfortunately, heart disease is one of the leading causes of death, so early detection is crucial. The retina of your eyes needs nourishment that it receives from the central retinal artery. If you suffer from heart disease, it can restrict blood flow, affecting the health of your eyes.

A lack of blood flow to the retina is called ischemia, which can eventually result in the death of retinal cells. An optometrist can provide recommendations so you can protect the health of your eyes and heart. Remember that you will still have to visit your primary care physician. An optometrist may be able to identify specific problems aside from vision health, but your primary doctor will still have to provide a diagnosis and treatment plan.

Contact an optometrist to learn more about adult routine eye exams. An eye doctor can determine if you need glasses, contacts, or exercises to improve your vision. As an added benefit, letting an optometrist peep your peepers may save your life.


4 May 2023

Visiting Your Optometrist Early

When a friend of mine started experiencing cloudy vision, they decided to put off a trip to their optometrist's office. Unfortunately, three months later, they found themselves completely blind in one eye—a condition that ended up being permanent. It turned out that they had an undiagnosed eye infection that destroyed their vision. After hearing about that problem, we realized that it might be smart to visit our eye doctor early—before permanent problems set in. Check out this blog for reasons not to skip out on early vision appointments, so that you can protect your family's vision and keep everyone happy and healthy.