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  • Prairie Eye Care

How to Prepare for Your Eye Exam: Tips for a Successful Visit

Updated: Jul 3

Regularly scheduled comprehensive eye exams are important for maintaining your vision and eye health. Eye exams can diagnose visual problems and detect diseases before they become serious issues. A visit to the optometrist can be intimidating! You might not know what to expect or how to prepare for your eye exam.

Here are a few tips for a successful visit:


Voice your Concerns and Ask Questions


If you've been experiencing eye issues or have questions about your eye health, now is the time to speak up. Come to your eye exam prepared with any questions or concerns you might have. Always be honest about any symptoms you've been experiencing so your eye doctor can correctly diagnose potential issues. Understanding the importance of an eye care exam is crucial for maintaining your overall health and preventing future vision problems. Possible symptoms include:


  • Frequent headaches

  • Blurry vision

  • Double vision

  • Swelling

  • Redness

  • Sensitivity

  • Pain

  • Dryness

  • Faded vision

  • Blind spots


Ask questions if you are unsure about any procedures or test results.


Bring a List of Your Current Medications


Bring a list of any medications you're taking and your current dosage to your eye appointment. This is important for a few reasons:


  • Gives your eye doctor an insight into your overall health and eye health

  • Some medications can affect your vision

  • Some medications can increase the risk of certain eye conditions

  • Some medications can react with drugs used during an eye exam (for example, eye drops)

  • This prevents your eye doctor from prescribing medication that could react with a current medication or worsen a preexisting condition


Your optometrist should be aware of any current medications you're taking to properly assess and treat your visual health.


Bring Your Eyeglasses or Contact Lenses


You should bring your current prescription glasses or contacts to your eye appointment to ensure they are in good working condition or to make any necessary adjustments.


Know Your Family History


Several eye issues, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration, are hereditary. The more information you can provide about your family's eye health history, the easier it is for your eye doctor to assess your risk of developing the same conditions.


Don't Strain Your Eyes


Try to come to your eye appointment with rested eyes. In the hours leading up to your appointment, avoid reading, watching TV, scrolling on your phone, or doing anything that could strain your eyes. Relaxed, rested eyes allow for the most accurate vision test results.


Bring Sunglasses


At your comprehensive eye exam, you may dilate your eyes with eye drops so your optometrist can get a better look at the retina at the back of your eye. Dilated pupils allow in a lot of light, and your eyes may be very sensitive after your exam. Wearing sunglasses can help with this brightness and sensitivity. If you know you'll be having your eyes dilated during your exam, you may want to plan for a family member or friend to drive you home afterward.


Stay Hydrated


Drink plenty of water before your eye exam and stay hydrated. When you're dehydrated, you won't produce enough tears to keep your eyes lubricated throughout your exam. Dry eyes might feel uncomfortable and irritated during your appointment. Avoid beverages like coffee and alcohol before your exam. These drinks can affect your blood pressure, interfering with the results of your eye exam.


Bring Your Insurance Information


Remember to bring your insurance card. Having your information ready at your appointment ensures that you'll be able to quickly submit your claim to your insurance provider.


Now That you Know How to Prepare for your Upcoming Eye Exam, you can Improve your Eye Health!


Preparing for your eye exam will improve your experience and help your appointment go as smoothly as possible. If you are due for an eye exam or have concerns about your visual health, contact us today at Prairie Eye Care.

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