Sunday, November 23, 2008

Prevention is better than cure.

Preventive measures are the best way to manage risk of vision threatening disease. diabetes, glaucoma and high blood pressure are among the most common causes of blindness yet the early stages often do not have symptoms. A regular eye exam can identify risk factors that could threaten your sight. Furthermore, your health insurance will often pay for your eye exam.

I had a patient come through my office last year who had a history of abusing his contacts. This meant that he kept his contact lenses far beyond the recommended wearing time. When we fit him for contacts I reminded him to come back to order lenses withing the month. "Buying lenses is far cheaper than dealing with a contact lens induced eye infection," I exclaimed. I did not see him again for three months. When he returned he had a large corneal ulcer. This time there was a risk of permanently losing vision and $500 worth of services.

In these volatile economic times neglecting the important can cost more if it becomes and emergency. Common knowledge states that cars should have their oil changed every 3 months or 3000 miles. Preventive maintenance can extend the life of a car. This applies to eye care also. A yearly checkup can allow an eye professional detect and manage conditions that affect your vision.

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