If you’re like most Americans, you probably thought you would notice a change in your vision if you had an eye disease. The fact is some of the leading causes of blindness—such as glaucoma or diabetic retinopathy—can begin without any symptoms. That’s why all healthy adults should get an eye exam at age 40, even if their vision seems fine. Early signs of disease and changes in vision may start to happen at this age. Here are four good reasons to see an eye care professional:
- Your brain adapts to vision loss, making some eye diseases go unnoticed until it is too late. Once vision is lost, it cannot be restored. Ophthalmologists can spot eye disease before vision is compromised.
- Seeing an ophthalmologist can improve not just your eye health, but your overall health. Because the blood vessels and nerves in your eye are reflective of the rest of your body, ophthalmologists are sometimes the first to diagnose diseases such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis, or vitamin deficiencies.
- Your eye health is dependent on different factors, like family history, ethnicity, age, and overall health. An eye care professional can help evaluate your personal risk factors and recommend best steps for disease prevention.
- Eye disease is also a looming problem for the U.S. healthcare system. As our population ages, the number of people afflicted with vision loss is expected to double by 2050.
For more tips and information, visit www.eyesmart.org.