Full Optometric Services
Comprehensive Eye Exams
Spectrum Eyecare schedules a full 30 minutes for complete eye exams. By taking the time to truly understand each patient’s unique vision needs, we can be sure to provide the best solution, whether that is eyeglasses, contact lenses or a surgical option. We are also able to provide a more thorough eye health exam to ensure the long term eye health of each patient.
Eye Care FAQ
If you (or your pediatrician) suspect any vision problems, or have a family history of congenital vision problems, then it is advisable to have an infant eye exam with a pediatric specialist. For most other children, a first eye exam around age 5 is ideal.
Depending upon your child’s prescription and level of maturity, a good rule of thumb is around age eleven. It is important for parents to carefully monitor the younger child’s actions to ensure safe practices with respect to contact lens care. For most children, daily disposables represent the safest option.
One must be at least 18 years of age to undergo LASIK and have a prescription that is not changing. When evaluating patients for LASIK we look for several other risk factors to determine candidacy for the procedure. If poor vision up close is your main problem, then glasses or contact lenses are likely to be a better option that LASIK.
Even if you have perfect vision, an eye exam is recommended at least every 3 years. Once you reach your 40’s exams are recommended a minimum of every two years. Those 50 years of age or older should have an eye exam annually, as should people who wear corrective lenses and/or have a family history of eye disease. The reason that even those of us with perfect vision should still have periodic eye exams is that many eye diseases have no symptoms early on.
We all lose the ability to focus up close as we age. This is a natural process, so we tend to have greater and greater difficulty with near tasks as we move through our 40’s and into our early 50’s. This often means a transition to bifocal glasses (often called progressive lenses) or necessitates the need for reading glasses over our contact lenses. The good news is that with the new digitally surfaced, HD style progressive lenses, it is easier than ever to make a successful transition to multifocal glasses.
As we age, we tend to produce fewer tears and they evaporate more quickly. This results in dry spots on the eye that cause feelings of grittiness, burning, and discomfort. Simply using artificial tears usually provides temporary relief. However, for those that need more help, we have more advanced treatments that can provide lasting relief for many patients.
Macular degeneration is by far the number one cause of vision loss in older Americans. This aging change causes a loss of the central, detail vision. Although no one goes blind from this condition, losing the ability to read, drive and manage our finances can be a devastating loss. There is hope for macular degeneration though. Promising treatments are being developed for macular degeneration. Ways to prevent macular degeneration are being developed as well. Your best bet currently is to have an annual eye exam, wear UV protective lenses when outside (sunglasses), to not smoke and to use certain nutritional supplements if advised by your doctor. The most important supplement seems to be lutein, which may reduce the risk of macular degeneration by more than 25%. Another major threat to vision is called glaucoma. Glaucoma is a slowly progressive disease that can lead to TOTAL blindness if undetected / untreated. Since glaucoma usually has no symptoms (it is often called the “sneak thief of sight”), it is critical to have annual eye exams once you are older than age 50. When detected early, treatment for glaucoma is usually pretty straightforward, by simply using one eye drop per day in the effected eye(s). With new technology, we can diagnose glaucoma up to a decade earlier than we were able to just a few years ago. The earlier the condition is diagnosed, the easier it is to treat.
Cataracts are not a disease, but rather a normal part of the aging process. A cataract is a clouding of one of the focusing lenses in the eye. As this lens gradually becomes more clouded, blurred vision, glare (especially at night) and halos are the result. A more subtle change is a gradual decrease in the perception of color intensity. Cataract removal is a surgery, albeit an outpatient one. Cataract surgery may be the single most successful surgical procedure ever created, with more than a 99% success rate. It should be a 10-minute procedure, with no stitches and rapid visual recovery. Many patients can see clearly at the distance for the first time in decades after this procedure. However, reading glasses are still needed in most cases. Because of this, any glasses you owned before cataract surgery are likely to not help anymore.