We’ve all heard that “eyes are the window to the soul.” But did you know they can also provide a window to your overall health and physical well-being?
When was your last eye exam? Do you even remember? It’s always the one checkup most of us forget. If you’re blessed with good vision, you probably don’t think there’s any need for an eye exam. But you’re not seeing the big picture.
Unlike some other annual exams, this one is a breeze, takes less than 45 minutes and is normally covered by your health insurance. Your primary care physician can refer you to an optometrist who’s easy to access and may also be associated with an optical shop.
Your eye exam is bound to include the typical “Read the lines in front of you” test, but the most important part will be when the doctor puts those little drops in your eyes to cause dilation. This relaxes your eye, allowing the physician to see all the way to the back and check for signs of glaucoma or the beginning of cataracts. A great eye doctor can even detect ailments like diabetes or high blood pressure.
If you’re experiencing blurriness while reading or trouble with night driving, an optometrist can determine if you need new lenses in your current glasses or need to start wearing glasses for the first time.
There’s only one potential negative to having your eyes checked. You could discover the current lenses in your favorite pair of glasses or sunglasses need replacement.
But if you love to shop as much as I do that’s actually another positive.
One pair of lenses is usually covered by your medical insurance. So, if you need a regular pair of glasses for work and another pair of sunglasses for driving (or just to protect your eyes from the harmful rays of the sun), your insurance may still only pay for one pair.
So, here are a few tricks for saving a few dollars when it comes time to shop extra eyeglasses or sunglasses.
- Visit second hand stores in your hood and look through all the eyeglasses on display. Most expensive frames last a long time and all you’ll have to do is get new prescription lenses inserted.
- Next time you’re at Costco picking up paper goods – did you know Costco is the largest purveyor of toilet paper in the world? Another fascinating fact from 360Women – stop by their optical department. They have beautiful designer frames at half the price you find in department stores.
- eBay is another source for fun, interesting, vintage eyeglass frames and sellers are also given ratings by past purchasers. If you’re like me and have little patience for auctions, there’s a wonderful “Buy It Now” tab that allows you to purchase most items at a fair value without waiting.
- Don’t throw away your old sunglasses or reading glasses! Save them all in a shoebox on a shelf in your closet and mark the outside of the box so you will know it’s not a pair of shoes. That way if you lose your new glasses – or give them away to the Salvation Army or Goodwill by mistake (Yes, I’ve done this more than once) – you can reach into your secret glasses box and find a pair of frames that can be repurposed.
So, what are you waiting for? Schedule an eye exam this week and start seeing yourself (and your health) in a whole new way.
“Everything that is made beautiful and fair and lovely is made for the eye of one who sees.” – Rumi