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How Often Do You Really Need to Get Your Eyes Checked

  • 11 October, 2023

    How Often Do You Really Need to Get Your Eyes Checked

    Maintaining good eye health is crucial for overall well-being and quality of life. Regular eye tests play a vital role in detecting and preventing eye diseases, ensuring optimal vision, and even revealing underlying health issues. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the importance of eye tests, recommended frequencies for different age groups, factors affecting the need for eye examinations, and how these tests contribute to your overall eye health.

    The Importance of Regular Eye Tests

    Detecting Eye Diseases

    Regular eye tests are essential for detecting and diagnosing various eye diseases, such as glaucoma, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and diabetic retinopathy. These conditions can be asymptomatic in their early stages, making early detection through eye exams crucial for effective treatment.

    Monitoring Vision Changes

    Routine eye examinations help monitor any changes in visual acuity, such as near-sightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. By correcting these vision problems with prescription glasses or contact lenses, individuals can improve their daily activities and reduce eye strain.

    Uncovering Underlying Health Issues

    Eye tests can often reveal signs of underlying health conditions like high blood pressure, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. The blood vessels and nerves in the eyes provide valuable insights into a person’s general health, making eye examinations a potential early warning sign for systemic diseases.

    Eye Test, How Often? The Recommended Frequencies for Eye Tests

    For Children and Adolescents

    Children should have their first comprehensive eye examination at around six months of age. Subsequent eye tests should be conducted at age three and before starting school. For school-aged children, it is generally advised to have their eyes checked every two years unless otherwise recommended by an optometrist.

    For Adults

    For adults aged 19 to 40 with no known eye conditions or risk factors, a comprehensive eye examination every two years is typically sufficient. However, individuals wearing contact lenses should have their eyes tested annually, as contact lens fittings and assessments are essential for maintaining eye health.

    For Older Adults

    As we age, the risk of eye diseases and age-related vision changes become more prevalent. Adults aged 40 and above are recommended to have their eyes tested every one to two years. For those with a family history of eye diseases, diabetes, or other medical conditions, more frequent eye examinations may be necessary.

    Factors Affecting the Need for Routine Eye Examination

    1. Medical Conditions

    Individuals with certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, have a higher risk of developing eye diseases. In such cases, regular eye examinations become even more critical for early detection and intervention.

    2. Family History

    A family history of eye diseases, such as glaucoma or macular degeneration, can increase an individual’s risk of developing the same. In these instances, it is advisable to consult with an optometrist to determine the appropriate frequency of eye tests based on the specific condition and family history.

    3. Visual Symptoms

    Experiencing symptoms like distorted vision, frequent headaches, or eye strain may indicate underlying vision problems or eye diseases. In such cases, it is crucial to seek an eye examination promptly to identify the cause and receive appropriate treatment.

    Dilated Eye Exam

    The Process of Eye Exam

    Standard Eye Test

    Standard eye tests typically involve checking visual acuity, assessing eye movements, evaluating eye pressure (tonometry), and examining the external and internal structures of the eyes using a slit lamp and digital retinal camera. These tests help identify vision problems and detect common eye diseases.

    Dilated Eye Examination

    Dilated eye examinations involve the use of eye drops to enlarge the pupils, allowing for a more thorough examination of the retina, macula and optic nerve. This procedure aids in the detection of subtle abnormalities and is particularly important for individuals at higher risk of eye diseases.

    Contact Lenses & Prescription Glasses Fitting and Assessments

    If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, regular eye examinations are crucial for evaluating fit, assessing any lens-related complications, and ensuring overall eye health. These assessments help prevent infections, corneal damage, and other complications associated with contact lens wear.

    Accessing eye test

    Accessing Eye Test

    A. Medicare Coverage

    In Australia, individuals with a valid Medicare card are eligible for bulk-billed eye tests, which means there are no out-of-pocket expenses for standard eye examinations. However, additional services, such as contact lens fittings and certain diagnostic tests, may incur additional costs.

    B. Private Health Insurance

    Private health insurance policies often provide coverage for glasses, contact lenses and additional eye care services. Checking with your insurance provider can help determine the extent of coverage and any associated out-of-pocket expenses.


    The Crucial Role of Regular Eye Tests in Preserving Optimal Eye Health and Well-Being

    Regular eye tests are fundamental to maintaining optimal eye health throughout life. By following the recommended frequencies based on age, considering individual risk factors, and prioritising comprehensive eye examinations, you can effectively monitor your vision, detect eye diseases early, and potentially uncover underlying health issues. Prioritising your eye health ensures a better quality of life and enables you get to enjoy clear vision and overall well-being for years to come.

    Prioritise Your Eye Health: Book Your Consultation with EyeQ

    For the best clinical eye care and personalised attention, book a consultation with your nearest EyeQ practice. At EyeQ, we provide you with the highest standard of eye care at every stage of life. With our state-of-the-art equipment and ongoing training and professional development programs, you can trust that your eyes will receive the best possible treatment.

    At EyeQ, we believe in offering personalised eye care services tailored to your unique vision needs. Our friendly staff will be more than happy to provide you with further information and address any questions or concerns you may have.

    Take a proactive step toward your eye health and schedule an appointment with EyeQ today.

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Our contact lens provider Alcon is experiencing delays fulfilling orders due to a cyber-security incident involving their freight partner, Toll Group. These delays are across their entire network of optical retailers in Australia. We apologise for an inconvenience caused and encourage you to contact your local EyeQ practice for any urgent requirements.