Ideally, your annual eye exam is enough to cover your eye health. However, there are several tell-tale signs that your eyes require extra—and immediate— attention. Here are five signs you should visit the eye doctor:
1. Eye pain
It’s never a good idea to put up with painful eye symptoms. There are many causes of eye pain, including infection, inflammation, glaucoma, and even eye cancer. If you are experiencing severe eye pain, schedule an appointment with your eye doctor.
2. Frequent headaches and eye strain
There are many causes of headaches, and your eye health is a leading source. Headaches can develop from eye strain, such as squinting to look at a computer or driving at night. Or, from a more serious source, such as eye alignment. If you experience frequent headaches or eye strain, visiting the eye doctor is a great first step to addressing these issues.
3. Difficulty driving at night
Night driving is a telling benchmark for declining vision. Why? It’s harder to see things in the dark, such as road signs and markers. And if your eyes are already struggling, it will be even more noticeable at night. The solution could be as simple as a new prescription, or more serious like a cataract forming in the eye. Either way, your eye doctor should assess your vision.
4. Sudden vision loss: blind spots, double vision, and more
You should seek immediate care for sudden vision problems, including blind spots, double vision, blurry vision, and tunnel vision. These symptoms can point to a retinal detachment or glaucoma, which causes elevated eye pressure. And, if you suddenly lose vision in one or both eyes, seek immediate medical attention as this may indicate a stroke or another serious medical problem.
5. You see bright flashes or floaters
A sudden increase in bright flashes, shadows, or floaters (these are spots in your vision that may appear as specks or strings) are symptoms of a detached retina, a serious eye injury that requires consultation with an eye doctor.
Don’t forget to schedule regular eye exams! The eyes are vulnerable to disease, infection, and injury. Routine check-ups can often detect these issues.
Rodrigue and Associates Eyecare is the leading eye care specialty practice in Augusta, Maine. For over 38 years, we have focused on providing our patients with the highest quality optometric and medical eyecare.