Why do doctors dilate eyes

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What to Expect When Your Eyes Are Dilated

why do doctors dilate eyes

Eye dilation assists your doctor in diagnosing common diseases and conditions, possibly at their Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products.


You may think your eyes are healthy, but visiting an eye care professional for a comprehensive dilated eye exam is the only way to really be sure. During the exam, each eye is closely inspected for signs of common vision problems and eye diseases, many of which have no early warning signs. Annual comprehensive dilated eye exams are generally recommended starting at age However, African Americans are advised to start having comprehensive dilated eye exams starting at age 40 because of their higher risk of glaucoma. Key elements of a comprehensive dilated eye examination include dilation , tonometry , visual field test and a visual acuity test. Dilation is an important part of a comprehensive eye exam because it enables your eye care professional to view the inside of the eye.

Have you ever wondered why your optometrist or ophthalmologist use eye drops to dilate your eyes before an eye test? These drops help your eye doctor examine your eyes to find warning signs that you have an eye disease. The most common eye drops used to dilate pupils is Atropine Sulfate. Without pupil dilation, the pupil will close up each time the doctor shines a light on it. According to Mayo Clinic , dilating your eyes is the best way to ensure your doctor can fully examine your ocular health. You may not need to have your eyes dilated with each exam, however.

The eye is a beautiful organ, and it is the only place in the human body where a doctor can see a part of the central nervous system, the optic nerve. The observation of that nerve is a crucial part of a comprehensive eye examination. Both the dilated and the undilated eye exams provide important information to an eye doctor.
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It usually takes about 20 to 30 minutes for your pupils to fully open. Light-colored eyes such as blue, green or hazel will dilate faster than brown eyes. While your eyes are dilated, your vision will be blurry. You will have trouble focusing on close objects. You also will be extra sensitive to bright light. If your eyes will be dilated for an exam or procedure, bring sunglasses with you. They will help with the glare and light sensitivity when you leave your appointment.

How Long Does It Take for the Effects from Eye Dilation Drops to Wear Off?

Ophthamology - Dilated Eye Exams

Is It Necessary to Have Your Eyes Dilated During Every Eye Exam?

It is a dilatable and contractile opening, the function of which is to regulate the amount of light entering the eyeball, acting as if it were the diaphragm of a camera. The size of the pupil is controlled by two muscles: the pupil sphincter muscle that closes it and the pupil dilator muscle that opens it. Under normal conditions, the pupil dilates and contracts naturally. During eye check-ups we frequently need to administer drugs in drop form to make the pupils dilate, also known as mydriasis. In this way, with the help of a slit lamp and an ophthalmoscope, devices for an eye examination that contain a light source, and a magnifying glass, we can perform a full and detailed examination of the retina and other elements found inside the eye, which cannot be examined otherwise. If we examine the eye without dilating it, we can see the eyelids, conjunctiva, cornea, iris, lens, etc.

Author: Virginia Rainey. A thorough, dilated exam allows your ophthalmologist to do a complete exam of the retina, and that is important to do throughout your life, as several eye diseases and conditions are detected at their earliest stages during a thorough eye exam:. On the other hand, Dr. We dilate because they have a greater capacity to accommodate and to allow the doctor to use an objective measure to confirm their prescription i. The risk of eye diseases increases with age—particularly over age


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5 thoughts on “Why do doctors dilate eyes

  1. A thorough, dilated exam allows your ophthalmologist to do a complete In fact, if you are seeing your eye doctor solely to get a prescription.

  2. Your doctor wants to dilate your eyes. Do you really need it? Here's what they're looking for and how it may affect you.

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