Most eye care experts recommend that you have a comprehensive eye exam every one to two years, depending on your age, risk factors and whether you currently wear corrective lenses.
When To Have Your Eyes Examined
Routine eye exams are essential for children to be ready to learn in school, and experts say more than 80 percent of information children receive in classrooms is presented visually.
Children generally should have their first eye exam at 6 months of age, another exam at age three and again at the start of school.
Risk-free children should then continue to have their eyes examined every two years until age 18.
Risk factors include:
- History of premature birth or low birth weight
- Infection of mother during pregnancy (examples: rubella, venereal disease, herpes, AIDS)
- Developmental delays
- Turned or crossed eyes (strabismus)
- Family history of eye disease
- High refractive error or anisometropia
- Other physical illness or disease
To maintain a lifetime of healthy vision, the AOA recommends a comprehensive eye exam every two years for adults ages 18 to 60, and annual exams for seniors age 61 and older.
“At risk” adults should have more frequent exams. Risk factors for adults include:
- A family history of eye disease (glaucoma, macular degeneration, etc.)
- Diabetes or high blood pressure
- A visually demanding occupation or one that may pose hazards to the eyes
- Taking prescription or non-prescription drugs that may have visual or eye-related side effects
- Previous eye injuries or eye surgery
Also, adults who wear contact lenses should have annual eye exams.