Eye exams can be mysterious. You get drops in your eyes that dilate your pupils. Then the doctor looks in your eyes with a bright light. He asks you to move your eyes in different ways.
What does it all mean?
At Wolchok Eye Associates, PA, we take the mystery out of eye exams. Our board-certified ophthalmologists, Stephen Wolchok, MD and Eugene Wolchok, MD, are the experts you want to see to help ensure your eye health.
We’ve designed some questions you may want to ask at your exam to help you better understand how your eyes are working and steps you can take to protect your vision. Don’t hesitate to ask your physician any of these questions at your next exam.
What tests are you performing during the exam and what do my results mean?
Here at Wolchok Eye Associates, we understand that you’re not familiar with the instruments an ophthalmologist uses. We provide comprehensive eye exams that not only check how good your vision is, but also check for disease that could threaten your vision. Our practice explains the purpose of each test and the meaning of your results.
We test your peripheral vision to determine whether you can see things to each side of you, which is especially important when driving. If you wear glasses or contacts, we check to see whether you need a new prescription.
Some eyes have problems with movement, muscles, and alignment. This can lead to difficulties with reading when undiagnosed, therefore your doctor determines if there is any abnormality in these areas. We also may check for glaucoma, cataracts, and other diseases depending on your eye issues.
Should I get glasses, contacts, or surgery to improve my vision?
A lot depends on personal preference. Glasses can be a fashion statement. If it would bother you to keep track of glasses, then contacts might be a good choice. Likewise, if you play sports, contacts give you an unobstructed view.
Your ophthalmologist tells you if you’re ready for vision surgery or if it would be a good choice for you. Not everyone is a candidate.
If I’m diagnosed with an eye condition, what is the treatment protocol and what is the prognosis?
If you do have an eye infection or eye condition, we explain what we are going to do to treat it. For example, if your vision is blurry, it could be the result of numerous causes such as a common astigmatism condition, dry eye syndrome, cataracts or glaucoma.
Our ophthalmologists explain common symptoms you may have if you do have an infection or eye condition. They let you know how long the treatment is going to take and what the prognosis is. They also explain what you need to do at home to care for your eyes, and how long the follow-up period is going to be.
We understand that you’re anxious to know if your condition is going to improve, and can answer all of your questions.
What are signs of eye disease I should watch out for?
Even if you notice a small change in your vision, it could be significant. It’s important to tell us about any and all symptoms and problems. For example, if you see some dark spots floating in front of your eye and flashes of light, you should come in for an appointment. It could be a retinal tear.
If you’re experiencing any of the following signs of possible glaucoma, it’s important to call for an appointment soon to get an eye exam:
- Blurred vision
- Tunnel vision
- Eye pain; a feeling of pressure
- Red eyes
- A halo around lights
Some types of glaucoma don’t have early symptoms — another reason for making your appointment for an annual eye exam.
How often should I have eye appointments?
The answer depends on your circumstances. Your ophthalmologist tells you how often you should come in for an eye exam based on your medical history, age, and genetics.
Older adults (60 and over) should have an eye appointment every one or two years. All adults over 40 with diabetes, high blood pressure or other health conditions that can affect the eyes should get an examination every year. Your doctor tells you if you need to come in more frequently than that. African Americans should start having glaucoma tests at age 40.
If you have a concern about your eyes, call Wolchok Eye Associates today or book an appointment online to schedule your eye exam at our office in Jacksonville, Florida.