Many Americans don’t take proper care of their eyes. According to the American Optometric Association, 16 million people aren’t receiving treatment for potential eye issues, and only 54% schedule an annual check-up. Your vision is essential, so you need to do everything you can to preserve it. A visit to your eye doctor in Lexington, KY is the best way to stay on top of your eye health.

Here are 8 reasons you should make an appointment with your optometrist today.

1. Severe Ocular Pain

Many people experience some form of eye pain. The usual culprits are eyelashes, bits of dirt, or irritation stemming from contact lenses. These usually result in mild pain and don’t necessitate a visit to your doctor.

On the other hand, severe eye pain should cause you to seek the help of a Versailles optometrist. You might have scratched your cornea or developed conditions like glaucoma or optic neuritis.

A scratched cornea is often very painful but is easily treated. Your eye doctor will give you medicated drops and the pain should subside in a few days.

Glaucoma is caused by eye fluid build-up putting pressure on your optic nerve. In many cases, this vision-threatening condition is quite painful.

Optic neuritis is another painful condition. It occurs when inflammation on your optic nerve reaches your brain.

2. Dilation Is Needed to Diagnose Problems

When you visit Lexington Eye Care for a routine eye exam, your optometrist will dilate your eyes using unique eye drops that cause your pupils to expand.

With your eyes dilated, your doctor can get a good look at the structures at the back of your eyes like the retina, macula, and optic nerve.

Your doctor needs to look at these structures to make sure you aren’t dealing with a few of the most dangerous eye conditions like glaucoma or macular degeneration.

3. Update Your Prescription

Your eyes will change over time, which results in you needing to change the prescription for your corrective lenses. Some people need a new prescription every year while others only need a change in prescription every few years. Your optometrist in Lexington, KY will be able to outline your ideal timeline.

There are a few signs that you might need a new lens prescription. These include headaches, blurry vision, and eye strain.

4. You Just Celebrated Your 40th Birthday

Your 40s are a pivotal time for eye care. At this age, you’re more likely to develop conditions like macular degeneration and presbyopia.

Macular degeneration is a serious, incurable condition. It can eventually cause complete vision loss.

There are a few other risk factors, like smoking and high blood pressure, but it usually doesn’t appear until after you turn 40. While there isn’t a cure for it, your optometrist can prevent it from getting worse.

Presbyopia occurs when your eye loses its ability to change shape to deal with distances. If you find yourself struggling to read, you might be developing presbyopia.

Some people can live with it, but you’ll eventually need glasses that can accommodate it. Your optometrist at Versailles Eye Clinic may recommend bifocals or transition lenses.

5. You Often Get Headaches

Headaches are a typical part of life, but if you have recurring headaches, there might be a problem with your eyes. It’s a common warning sign of several eye-related issues.

Eye strain is a common cause of many headaches. This means the muscles that contribute to your vision are overworked.

Focusing for an extended period of time can cause eye strain. The issues associated with it usually subside after you rest your eyes a bit.

It could also be a sign that you need glasses. You shouldn’t be straining your vision while you work on your computer or watch TV.

Headaches can also be an indication of other serious ocular issues like astigmatisms and cataracts. If you’re battling constant headaches, visit your optometrist to receive treatment for your vision problems.

6. “Floaters” in Your Field of View

Floaters are a common vision problem. They’re the shadow of microscopic particles in your eye fluid.

As you age, the jelly-like vitreous starts to become more fluid. Bits of the vitreous can clump together, causing floaters.

Floaters aren’t usually a cause for alarm. Your brain learns to ignore them in time.

However, if you notice a dramatic increase in the number of floaters present in your eye, you should seek a doctor’s help immediately. You might have a retinal tear or a retinal detachment, both of which can cause vision loss.

7. Your Vision Is Suddenly Getting Worse

Most people understand that they should make an eye doctor appointment if they notice their vision getting worse. While age can cause your vision to decline, if you notice a dramatic drop in your ability to see, you might be facing an emergency situation.

As soon as you notice your vision deteriorating, you need to visit your optometrist. You could be in the process of developing a condition that can cause complete vision loss.

8. Insight into Potential Health Problems

Your eyes can provide your doctor with valuable insight into a myriad of different health issues. This is due to the fact that the eyes are the only place on the human body where blood vessels and nerves can be directly observed.

They can spot the warning signs for problems like hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes just by taking a look at the condition of your eyes.

The Best Eye Doctor in Lexington, KY

Taking care of your eyes is one of the most important things you can do for your health. If you don’t visit your eye doctor regularly, you could be at risk of developing a serious, vision-threatening condition.

Be wary of warning signs like eye pain and a large number of floaters, and seek help should these things occur.

When you need an optometrist, visit the Kentucky Eye Institute, the best place to see an eye doctor in Lexington, KY. We have 11 office locations, so there’s sure to be one in your area. Reach out to schedule an appointment.