MMC Benefits Handbook
What to Know About Vision Care
Why should I have my eyes examined regularly?
According to the American Optometric Association, routine eye exams can detect a number of serious health conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, and even cancer.
How frequently should I have my eyes examined?
You and your doctor should determine the eye exam schedule that best meets your eye care needs. However, as a general rule, the American Optometric Association recommends that you should not go beyond two years to have your eyes examined. Those with a family history of eye diseases, diabetic patients, and anyone whose general health is poor or who are taking medications that may have potential side effects on the eye may need to have their eyes examined twice a year.
Do I need a special eye exam as I get close to, or past, age 40?
The American Optometric Association recommends that you continue to have your regular eye exam at least every two years. As you age, you are more susceptible to certain eye diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration. Getting your eyes regularly examined helps your eye doctor detect the first signs of disease and prescribe the appropriate treatments to prevent vision loss.
When should my child have their first eye exam?
The American Optometric Association recommends that children have their first regular eye exam at six months. A thorough exam should be done by age three because this is the age when a child's visual system undergoes its most rapid development and vision correction is most effective.
How frequently should children's eyes be examined after their initial exam?
According to the American Optometric Association, children's eyes should be examined every two years—or more frequently if there is an eye or vision problem or a family history of eye disease. School children use their eyes more frequently than some adults to read and perform other school activities, so it's important for them to have regular eye exams. Also, it is important to remember that an eye screening typically offered at school only tests distance and will not detect some vision problems. Your child could have problems with near vision, eye coordination and focusing and still have 20/20 distance vision.
What is the difference between a routine eye exam and a contact lens exam?
Routine eye exams are designed to detect vision problems and are an important preventive measure for maintaining your overall health and wellness. In fact, according to the American Optometric Association, a thorough eye exam can detect certain medical conditions, such as glaucoma and diabetes.
Contact lens exams are designed to evaluate your vision with contact lenses. Although your vision may be clear and you feel no discomfort from your lenses, there are potential risk factors with improper wearing or fitting of contact lenses that can affect the overall health of your eyes.
Why is the contact lens exam not covered as part of my routine eye exam?
The Plan covers routine eye exams. A contact lens exam is an additional exam for contact lens wearers to determine the proper size and shape of contact lenses for your eyes and to evaluate your vision with the contact lenses. Depending on your needs, a doctor will provide services, such as training and education. You should discuss the services that your doctor provides to better understand the value of the contact lens exam, as well as the extent of the services necessary for your own eye health.