As with a visit to see any physician, it is a good plan to arrive prepared so that you can get the most out of your next visit with your local eye doctor. Whether you are seeing an optometrist or an ophthalmologist, chances are you will only have 15-30 minutes with the physician. You’ll want to make the most of it.

Are you ready for your next appointment?

A few minutes of preparation will help you make the most of your visit to the eye doctor.

Follow these tips to get the most out of your eye exam:

  1. Bring your best pair of glasses, even if you have seen this doctor before. This is even more important if you are going to a new vision care clinic. Even if the glasses are broken, valuable information about your prescription can be read from the lenses. This can help your eye doctor make key decisions about your new glasses prescription.

  2. If you wear contacts and plan to get a new contact lens prescription, wear the lenses into the office. If you are seeing a new doctor it will be very helpful if you can bring in the prescription for your contacts, the boxes your contacts came in (or foil from the blister packs). This will allow your optometrist to fine-tune your prescription, which can save you time and frustration.

  3. Take a few moments to think about any eye problems you have been having. Feel free to make some notes on your symptoms, when they started, what makes them worse, and what helps. Your eye doctor will be inquiring about these things during your eye exam, so it is worthwhile to spend five minutes thinking (or jotting notes) about them in advance.

  4. Call your parents or grandparents. It is important to know your family history of eye disease (glaucoma, macular degeneration, retinal detachment, etc). Many eye diseases have a genetic component, so giving your eye doctor accurate info can affect your treatment plan. Only report the family history of those closely related to you. This includes grandparents, parents, siblings, and your children.

  5. Bring your insurance card. If you intend to use vision or medical insurance at this office, make sure you come prepared by knowing your coverage and/or be ready to pay out of pocket.

  6. If you use any eye medications or eye drops bring those medications with you to the eye exam appointment.

  7. Get involved in the conversation. As with most doctor-patient relationships, this is a partnership that requires your input to get optimal results. If you know that your main issue is that the computer at work is blurry with or without your glasses, go ahead and bring this up at the start of the visit. Waiting until the final moments of the eye exam to present new problems may not get addressed and lead to another appointment.

Being prepared for any healthcare appointment will make sure you get the most out of your visit and improve your care.

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