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Having your eyes examined every year is essential to maintaining your visual health. Before you leave for your next appointment, make sure you have everything you need! When you prepare for your eye exam, you will have much more success and will get the most out of the time you spend with your eye doctor. Don't forget these five things the next time you visit your optometrist:

1.      A current set of glasses or contacts.  It will be easy to remember this step if you wear glasses or contacts all the time. But even if you wear your glasses or contacts only part-time, you should still bring them to your appointment. By doing so, your optometrist can determine whether or not your current vision prescription is helping you see as clearly as possible. In addition, your eye doctor will be able to make sure that your choice of vision aid fits properly. This is particularly important if you wear contacts, which can irritate your eyes if they are not fitted properly.

2.      A list of the medications you take. While you might not think your eye doctor is interested in your medications, this is an important piece of information for them. Some medications increase your risk of developing vision problems since certain side effects are common with them. Due to this, your optometrist will need to know what sort of medicines you commonly take; this will enable them to check for relevant possible problems and may even lead to an updated recommended eye exam schedule based on your individualized vision needs. (By the way, you should not just mention your prescription medications - over-the-counter medications and natural supplements should also be included.)

3.      Sunglasses (or a driving buddy).  There are some insurance plans that require yearly eye exams that often include tests that can only be performed with dilated pupils. This is done using eye drops administered by your optometrist. Until the eye drops wear off, however, your eyes will be extremely sensitive to light, and it will be difficult to see clearly. In some cases, patients only require sunglasses after getting their eyes dilated. However, if you will still struggle to see despite wearing shades, arrange a ride home so that you can make it safely home after your appointment.

4.      Vision insurance information. The most common question we receive is whether patients should use their vision or medical insurance at their appointment.  In order to answer this, it will be necessary to know what the purpose of your exam is. For example, patients with medical problems, such as glaucoma or dry eyes, will typically use their medical insurance. People seeking new glasses, on the other hand, will use their vision plan. Because of this, you should always bring a copy of your vision insurance card and your regular medical insurance information to your appointment, so that you’re prepared to use either.

5.      Questions, concerns, or information for your doctor. Before your eye doctor's appointment, it's a good idea to review a few things you may wish to discuss or share. 

  • Consider asking about your family history during the exam, as genetics may play a role in certain eye problems. 
  • A recent health issue, injury, or operation that might impact your vision.
  • Changing vision, such as blurry vision, flashes of light, poor night vision, or double sight.
  • Any questions or information you may have about your eyes

If you're due for an eye examination soon, don't forget to bring these five items with you.  The five items listed above can help your eye exam run more smoothly, and they will make the appointment more beneficial and informative for both you and your eye doctor.


Featured Video Education

Take a moment to watch the following videos featuring our latest eye health tips, products, and office technology! We welcome you to visit our video education library as well, which has many more informational videos. If you have questions at any time, be sure to contact us. We'd love to help!

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