An eye exam (click for more info) contains many routine procedures, and you may be happy with the current flow of the exam. However, if you want to take full advantage of your time at the eye doctor's office, here are some things you can do to get the best eye exams possible each year.
Prepare Your Medical History
The medical history section of eye exams can take up a good portion of the visit if you aren't prepared with your answers. And if you aren't able to give a thorough account of your past eye conditions and your family's medical history, your doctor may miss some important clues to diagnosing your issues correctly and giving preventative care tips. It can be helpful to write all of these things down beforehand and consult family members and past eye doctors to get all of the information.
Opt for Retinal Photographs
After the medical history, the doctor is likely to take a close look at your retina to look for abnormalities. There are two methods that are common for doing this: either the doctor will use dilating drops to enlarge the pupils so they can see clearly into the eye, or they will use a special digital camera to take images of the retina. While the retinal images may be more expensive, they are a great thing to opt for as they can get clearer and more permanent images.
Keep a Log of Eye Issues
While your eye doctor will do a thorough exam and give you exercises to try and identify vision problems, it's also helpful for you to note any issues up front. For instance, if you've been having vision-related headaches, trouble seeing in certain situations, or you have a physical problem with your eyes, keep a log of when these issues pop up and the symptoms you note. At the same time, it's helpful to know whether you want to switch your glasses. If you've been having vision troubles, or you're not happy with your method of prescription (glasses vs contacts), then stating this upfront can help your eye doctor to get you the correct treatment plan.
Annual eye exams might be the only time you have each year to discuss eye concerns, so it's a good idea to try and maximize the time you have to get the most correct and thorough diagnoses. By doing these steps to optimize your visit, you can do just that.