Taking a comprehensive eye test can evoke feelings of anxiety in many people. Individuals might fear to get bad news, like having an eye disorder, when getting an exam. And consequently, stall eye checkups as much as they can. However, that's not necessary.
Getting your eyes checked doesn't mean you have an eye condition or that are at the risk of developing one. It's merely a routine task to make sure there's nothing to worry about in your eyes. And if you take good care of your eyes, then the chances are that your eyes will be just fine.
So how often does one get these routine checkups to make sure their eyes are functioning correctly? There is no one rule of thumb to follow when it comes to getting your eyes checked. A bunch of factors, such as age, eye history, history of eye conditions in the family, influence how often does one get their eyes checked. However, if you don't have a personal or family history of eye infections, then you should go to an ophthalmologist at least once every two years.
And if you want to do everything by the book, then you should determine the frequency of your visits to the eye doctor based on your age. People belonging to different age groups should get their eyes checked as required by their age.
Children (6 months to 18 years)
The first eye exam for a child should be at six months. The doctor will check the baby's eyes for any underlying eye disorder. If the first test comes clean, then the child can go up to 4 years without getting an eye exam. The next examination should be done before a child starts school. And if that also comes out clean, then a child doesn't have to visit the eye doctor often. A checkup every two years till the age of 18 is enough for proper eye-care.
Adults (18 years to 60 years)
IF a person doesn't have the following conditions to consider, then they should get eye exams every two years.
- A family history of glaucoma or macular degeneration
- Weak eyesight
- Diabetes or blood pressure
If an individual has any of these conditions, then they require more frequent exams than one biennially. High blood pressure and diabetes can damage the blood vessel in the eye, which can lead to multiple eye problems. Therefore, it's essential to visit the eye doctor every few months or at least once a year if one has the said conditions.
In case of an eye injury, visit the eye doctor is a must. You need to make sure there isn't any permanent damage to the eye after the accident.
Adults (61 years and older)
Aging increases the risk of eye issues significantly. Therefore, older people should see an ophthalmologist once a year. If an individual has an eye condition, then they should pay more frequent visits to the eye doctor.
Eye tests are essential at any age. Neglecting them can lead to irreversible damage to the eyes. So one should have regular eye checkups to ensure effective eye-care.