How do you know when you need to see an eye doctor?

Although we are in the industry, so we know the importance of annual exams, people who are not familiar with the optical filed may question why they need to get in for annual exams. So we wanted to list out seven signs that you may need to see an optometrist.

What are the seven signs you need to see an eye doc?

Before we get into the signs you need to see an eye doctor, if you follow our blogs you know we are always talking about how important it is for annual exams because once you notice your vision is failing, it is most likely not reversable. That is why it is so important to not only get in for annual exams, but to also take vision loss or blurred vision seriously. With that said, let’s look at some signs you need to schedule an appointment today!

Difficulty seeing while night driving or inability to stare at a computer screen for a long period of time

Are you seeing “halos” while you’re looking at headlights at night? Or maybe you are thinking I’m struggling more seeing at night. This is a good sign you need to get into an eye doctor. Not only can we help pinpoint your discomfort, we have several lens options, such as anti-reflective coatings, that can greatly reduce discomfort while night driving.

Many patients express that a loss in vision during night driving was the first sign they needed a new or updated prescription.   

In addition, eye discomfort while looking at a computer screen can indicate the need for a prescription, or at least lenses that block blue light decreasing the strain on the eye. This can be due to the fact that the average person blinks 15 times per min, when staring at a screen we blink much less often creating a ton of addition vision problems. The more we can do to decrease discomfort the less likely we are to see long term affects and discomfort. Sometimes it is as easy as taking frequent consistent breaks, drops, or other methods but sometimes it takes a plan of action with your optometrist.

Red or pink eyes with or without pain

If your eyes are pink, red, or hurt this can indicate a larger issue. If your eyes hurt, don’t wait around, get in to see an eye doctor right away. This can be considered a medical emergency if accompanied with blurry vision, headache, nausea, and vomiting. It can also be as simple as a foreign body. At the end of the day it’s not normal, so it is worth at least a phone call to an optical professional.

Similar to eye pain, redness in the eye is not normal and can show signs of something more severe. It can be pink eye (conjunvities) allergies, or something more serious like glaucoma. If your pink or red eye is longer than 48 hours, it again is worth at least a phone call to an optical doctor.

Light sensitivity

Light sensitivity can often increase with age. It can also accompany selling in the eye. Much like pink eye, it could be something simple and fixed easily or an idea of something more severe. If it is something related to the natural aging of the eye, we have so many solutions in our lenses that can help reduce this discomfort and in turn protect your eyes over time.

Trouble focusing on objects, near or far

There are a plethora of reasons why your vision may change over time or suddenly. These issues may be just the need for a prescription or a change in a current prescription. It will take a full exam with an eye doctor to determine why these sudden changes may occur. For example, hormones can change vision. Therefore, hormonal changes can be related to vision changes. It is important to stay on top of vision changes to decrease discomfort.

A medical diagnosis that can affect vision

Patients with diseases such as diabetes that can affect vision directly, should always ensure they get in to see an eye doctor annually. This will help identify issues at the start, greatly decreasing the chances of irreversible eye damage.


It has been said for years, a good sign your vision may need an exam is consistent headaches. Although this is not always vision related, checking your vision is a great place to start in reducing frequent headaches. Headaches can be caused by dry eyes, not just eyes that need a prescription.

Seeing spots or flashes

If your vision has spots or flashes, it can be normal, or it may be a serious and not reversable vision issue. Sometimes these issues can be caused by a torn retina, creating bleeding in the eye. Either way, if you are having these symptoms getting into an optometrist to identify them before they get worse is crucial.

As you can see, any of these vision issues can be simply an irritation or it could be a severe issue. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact our offices to schedule an appointment today!