We are now accepting new patients! As a new patient, you might be wondering what is included in a routine eye exam? When you go to an Optometrist for an eye exam, you aren’t just getting your vision checked so that you can buy a pair of glasses or contact lenses – an eye exam is much more than just that.
One of our trained Optometrists will start by taking an ocular and medical history. This is important as many systemic diseases such as high blood pressure, thyroid conditions and diabetes can all affect vision and the health of the eyes.
The doctor will then check your vision with your current glasses or contact lens (if you wear them). For new patients, be sure to bring your existing glasses or contact lenses even if you don’t wear them all the time. This will help in establishing a baseline for your vision.
The preliminary exam will proceed with checking eye teaming (how the eyes fuse and work together to see objects), eye muscle movements, how the pupils respond to direct and indirect light, and your peripheral vision. Colour vision and depth perception are also checked in children.
The examination will continue by checking for a prescription to be used for glasses – for distance, intermediate, and near vision. The majority of our locations use computer assisted technology to obtain the most accurate results in order to help our patients see clearly and comfortably.
The doctor will then instill a drop in each eye to check for eye pressure. This is important to check for an ocular disease called glaucoma which can cause slow peripheral vision blindness.
Finally, the doctor will check the retina (the back of the eye). This can be done both dilated (another drop is instilled) or undilated (no second drop needed). By dilating, the doctor can look further out into the periphery of the retina to check for retinal holes/tears or a detached retina. The retina is checked for ocular diseases such as glaucoma, age related macular degeneration, diabetic, and hypertensive changes.
By looking at various parts in your eyes such as your retina, blood vessels in your eye, etc., an Optometrist may be able to determine if you are starting to develop several other conditions which effect your general health. Some of these conditions include the following: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, skin cancer, autoimmune disorders, thyroid disease, tumours, eczema, tapeworm, and liver disease. Often a change in the colour of the eye, in the eye, or around the eye will help in determining if you have one of the above conditions.
Routine eye examinations are recommended annually for children under the age of 18 and seniors over the age of 65. Patients aged 19 to 64 should have a routine eye exam every 1-2 years.
There are also other types of eye exams we do (far from routine) on a case by case basis. For example, dry eye/ocular allergy assessments, pre/post ocular surgical exams, and for Lasik/PRK referrals.