If you have regular teeth cleanings and an annual physical wellness check, you might think you're doing everything you are required to keep yourself healthy. However, there's one important exam that you may be overlooking: your eye exam. Skipping eye exams can be detrimental not only to your vision, but to your overall health and in a number of ways. Read on to learn about how having regular eye exams can benefit your overall health, what to expect from an eye exam, and everything else you need to know about them.

Typical Goals of an Eye Exam

During any standard eye exam, there are a few outcomes that your eye doctor will likely want to achieve. Most commonly, your eye doctor will be checking the quality of your vision to determine whether you need an eyeglass or contact prescription. Furthermore, during an eye exam, your doctor may be on the lookout for any eye alignment issues. The last (but perhaps most important) outcome of any eye exam is to catch eye diseases in their early stages so that they can be treated properly.

Your Eyes and Your Health

Believe it or not, your eyes can be a window into your overall health. After all, there are many serious diseases and health conditions that show symptoms in a person's eyes, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and even diabetes. In some cases, symptoms of the eye may be the first symptoms of these conditions displayed. In this sense, your eye doctor may be able to detect and diagnose diseases earlier than your regular doctor would.

What to Expect

If it's been awhile since your last eye exam or if you've never had one, you might be nervous about the prospect of scheduling one in the near future. However, you shouldn't be; eye exams are pain-free and generally quite simple. Generally, your eye doctor will start by asking you a few questions about your eyes and vision. From there, you'll move on to the physical exam, at which time a doctor will examine the eyes (and specifically, the pupils) and have you read off a series of letters from a chart. Depending on the results of your basic exam, follow-up may be needed.

Eye exams should be scheduled at least once every couple of years, so if you haven't had one recently, now would be a great time to contact your eye doctor, such as The Eye Depot.