Why The Optometrist Dilates Your Pupils

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You may have had some problems with your eye and thus need to seek medical attention from a specialist. When you go to seek the specialists service, they will do the examinations to try and detect what the problem could be. When a doctor examines your eye physically, they are not only looking at the health of the outside surface but also the general condition of the inside too. To do this, they watch the pupil which serves as a keyhole to the retina. The optometrist will shine light into your eye as a procedure of detecting the problem. Naturally, when this is done, the pupil will shrink as a mechanism for protecting the eye from the bright light. The specialist can, however, open wide the pupil by putting special eye drops into the eye.  The size of the pupil will be similar to the one formed when you enter a dark room. Through this wide opening, it is possible for the doctor to have a clear look of the inner eye thus making the examination more thorough and efficient. Even though this procedure is time-consuming, it is a vital part of having your general eye care taken care of.

As part of the process, the optometrist will apply eye drops into your eye to have the pupil widened. For the drops to work, it will take around 15 to 20 minutes. There are, however, side effects of the eye drop including difficulty in focusing up close as well as sensitivity to light. Consequently, you have to give ample time for the whole examination process. This will include both the preparation and the recovery time. The dilating drops function on one of two principles; either by stimulation of the iris muscle which eventually opens the pupil or prevention of iris muscle which closes the pupil

After about thirty minutes when the pupil is fully dilated, the optometrist can now have a clear look into the eye all the way to the back. During any other normal eye examination, the specialist uses a lens and some light to look into the eye and check the health of the cornea, the lens of the eye as well as the iris. They can examine the vital blood vessels and the optic nerve keenly to ensure there are no signs of cataracts and diseases. There are also some health problems that can be revealed by pupil dilation including hypertension, eye conditions like glaucoma, diabetes, and cataracts. As well, this exam can show the thinning areas of the retina or holes and tears which can cause retinal detachment and blindness. On completing the exam, the pupil will remain dilated for a while. At this instance, it is prudent to wear dark glasses to protect your eye structures from damage by the bright daylight. Some optometrist will provide you with disposable sunglasses to serve that purpose if you dont have one.

Going through this exam may disorient you for a while, and as such, if you have a car, you can take some time before you can go to drive home.

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