The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends all persons should have a baseline ocular screening by age forty even if there are no visual issues. This includes dilation of the pupils to examine the structures inside the eye.
If in an early stage, such disorders may have not yet affected visual acuity. Since some eye conditions are not detectable from an external eye examination it is necessary to use dilation drops in order to examine the eye’s interior.
Dilation of the eyes is necessary for a full evaluation of the retina, optic nerve, as well as the blood supply in the back of the eye.
How Eye Dilation Works
Dilation takes 20 to 30 minutes to take effect. Individuals with lightly colored blue, green or hazel pupils could respond to dilation faster than people with darker colored pupils. The patients with lighter colored pupils may have greater sensitivity to light after dilation than those who have darker pupils. Such patients may benefit from sunglasses until the dilation drops wear off.
Certain health conditions or medicines could affect how quickly and how large pupils can dilate. Patients with neurological conditions, previous eye inflammations or individuals who have used Flomax may require more dilation drop instillations before maximal pupil dilation.
Weather one has light or dark colored pupils near vision tasks may be challenging. This is due to a side effect some dilation drops have which reduces the near vision focusing system’s capacity. While dilated, near objects could be blurred until dilation drops wear off.
Dilation Helps Detect Diabetic Retinopathy
Diabetics or pre-diabetics need dilated eye exams as diabetic retinopathy affects the interior of the eye. Diabetic retinopathy is best evaluated after dilation. A family history of glaucoma or dry age-related macular degeneration is an indication for having a dilated exam.
Talk to a specialist or eye surgeon today about your eye health. One third of the population in the United States will have a vision affecting eye condition by age 65. Preserving good acuity could depend on early detection of eye conditions after a dilated eye examination.
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