Can You See Clearly?

It’s National Vision Month!

If you have trouble seeing, it’s smart to see an eye doctor. But even if your eyes feel fine, an eye doctor might spot serious problems. Common eye problems include glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. These problems can harm your eyesight or even cause blindness.

Eye exams are painless. Your eye doctor will ask you about any eye and health problems in your family. Then the eye doctor will use lights and eye drops to look at your eyes. Some of the eye drops can affect your vision for several hours.

You need eye exams throughout your life. Have your eyes checked about every two years from age three onwards. If you have diabetes or other health problems, ask your doctor how often to have your eyes checked.

Tips to Save Your Sight

This time of year, many people undertake home repair, yard cleanup and sports. Be sure to protect your eyes during these activities. A quarter of a million Americans suffer eye injuries annually, and more than half of these injuries occur in the home.

Wear safety glasses (marked with “ANSI Z87.1” on the lens or frame) during remodeling and yard projects, even while mowing the lawn. Stones and debris sent flying can damage eyes.

When outdoors, wear sunglasses or goggles that block 99 percent of ultraviolet A and B radiation. The sun’s rays can harm the eyes or even cause photokeratitis—comparable to sunburning the eyeball.

Closely supervise craft projects. Kids’ creative use of household items like coat hangers, glue and pencils puts them at a greater risk of eye injury.

Leave the fireworks to the professionals. Every year, fireworks accidents account for 2,400 eye injuries, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Need a physician? Find one near you at


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