Getting regular eye checkups is important for everyone, whether they’re aware of any vision loss or not. Many disorders of the eye are treatable, either through single operations or ongoing treatments, but it’s always better to catch common eye disorders early. Some people, however, are at an even higher risk for eye sickness. You should be even more vigilant if you or someone you care for have one or more of the following risk factors:
This one goes beyond the stereotype that older people start needing reading glasses at some point. 2%–that’s 2.2 million–of Americans who are 40 or older have glaucoma. Eyedrops, laser treatment and other surgery are all used to treat glaucoma.
It’s sometimes difficult to determine the role of race in health problems. But research generally shows that African Americans have a higher risk of glaucoma; therefore, at the very least, African Americans should have an eye exam every two years.
- Other Health Problems
Diabetes places patients at a much higher risk for glaucoma, cataracts and other disorders of the eye that lead to vision loss. It’s very important that people with diabetes undergo yearly eye examinations.
- Family History
Many diseases of the eye are genetic or have a hereditary component. Educate yourself about your family history to know if vision impairment or sight loss are common problems. You may have always assumed that your grandparents only used glasses because of their age, but ask when they started experiencing vision loss and share that information with your optometrist. If you discover family history of a condition, you may want to find an optometrist experienced with that particular disease.
Of the approximately 61 million Americans who are at risk for severe vision loss, only half have seen a doctor in the last year. Remember, regular eye checkups are an important part of overall health, so protect you and your loved ones by educating yourself about eye health. More info like this.