A Look Back at the Year of the Eye 2020

Glenn K. Davis, II, M.D., Offers a Reflective Look at This Past Year

Dr. Davis offers this Year of the Eye 2020 recap as a way for us to take a reflective look at this past year. 2020 has certainly given patients and their families some unexpected challenges in managing eye health and safety. The COVID-19 pandemic lingers as a reminder to us all that we cannot take our eye and other health safety for granted.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) designated 2020 as “The Year of the Eye.” In recent months our offices in Pulaski and Galax, Virginia, have offered encouraging messages on a number of eye health topics. This Year of the Eye 2020 recap is another look at some of the important matters to keep in mind as we enter the new year ahead.


20 Reasons to See an Ophthalmologist

We can start by taking a look at why a patient would want to see an ophthalmologist. When it comes to conditions related to the eye as well as overall health, ophthalmologists are able to diagnose and treat eye diseases. As trained physicians and surgeons, their medical specialty extends beyond the eye to other systemic conditions that affect eye and overall health.

  1. One main reason to see an ophthalmologist, for adult patients age 40 and under, is to have a comprehensive eye exam. The doctor will dilate the eyes to examine them for their condition. Having this type of exam early can help prevent vision problems as years go by.

Regular Eye Exams Can Boost Health

If the year 2020 taught us a lesson, it was the importance of maintaining diligence when it comes to our health and wellness. The pandemic put into effect many changes in how medical practices manage patient visits. 2020 also gave us insight into why regular eye exams are important in keeping us healthier.

  1. The ophthalmologist checks each patient’s individual risk of disease. Factors that influence this can relate to race, age, family history, and more. Obtaining this insight can help direct you to other health screenings.
  2. Early diagnosis by an ophthalmologist can mean taking steps to protect your sight. The doctor can check your eye for diseases that may potentially blind you, such as glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and more. So many eye conditions can quietly affect your vision and impair it without you noticing obvious symptoms.
  3. Boosting health by visiting the ophthalmologist can help you decide on healthier lifestyle choices. This can range from eating foods that promote eye health, protecting your eyes from ultraviolet light, and other healthy options personal to your life.
  4. Consulting with an ophthalmologist can help you with the pros and cons of adding dietary supplements and other vitamins to your regimen.

When to Seek Immediate Medical Attention

Many patients know to seek immediate medical attention at critical times. This is especially true for your eyes and vision. Focused attention by an ophthalmologist can bring accurate and prompt relief for infections and injuries.

  1. Eye infections can lead to other complications, such as blindness. Consider skipping a visit to the urgent care center and visit a local ophthalmologist right away. Prompt care for any eye infection can lessen the risk.
  2. Acute eye injury does require emergency medical attention. Many ophthalmologists work closely with hospital emergency departments. Seek immediate medical attention for any type of accident or injury to the eye. This type of specialty care in an emergency situation can help rule out and treat potentially serious damage.
  3. Be watchful for symptoms that indicate a change in vision or sudden blurriness. These obvious changes may mean you need treatment for a systemic disease or eye condition like cataracts.
  4. Flashes or floaters in your vision could be a sign of retinal detachment. Be sure to visit the doctor for a checkup.
  5. Double vision can be a warning of nerve injury or a systemic brain condition. This warrants a visit to the doctor.
  6. Any sudden vision loss must be checked right away for a potentially blinding eye condition. If your vision darkens for a few seconds and comes back, it may signal a visit to the emergency room or with an ophthalmologist.

Even More Reasons to Visit the Ophthalmologist

We are just a little more than halfway through the 20 reasons to visit the ophthalmologist. Here are even more reasons to visit Dr. Davis’ office nearest you in Pulaski and Galax:

  1. People living with diabetes need regular eye checks. Having high blood sugar can damage blood vessels in the eye and cause vision loss.
  2. Vision changes during pregnancy can range from dry eye to high blood pressure or pregnancy-related diabetes.
  3. Considering refractive surgery, such as a LASIK procedure, can be an expense. An office visit can determine if you are a good candidate for such a procedure.
  4. Consulting with an ophthalmologist specializing in oculoplastics is a wise reason to visit before cosmetic surgery on your face.
  5. There are risk factors and safety tips for eye-related products like contact lenses and eyelash growth serums. These require a doctor’s prescription.
  6. Dry eye may take more than home remedies. See the ophthalmologist to help find the cause of dry eye and effective treatment.
  7. Get the facts right from the doc on over-the-counter ‘vision saving’ devices. As a result, you might save money as well as your vision.
  8. Persons with low vision may benefit from adding an ophthalmologist to their vision rehabilitation team. Consult with the specialist on ways to boost independence and preserve sight.
  9. Regular eye exams can help protect sight throughout your lifetime. Make it part of your health routine to visit the doctor on a regular basis.

A Few Final Words on Eye Health…

Many consider sight to be the sense they rely on the most. For more on eye safety around the house, avoiding eye hazards, and a special coronavirus guide, visit the AAO website. Dr. Davis hopes these 20 reasons and looking back at the Year of the Eye 2020 brings our patients improved eye health in the new year.


For excellence in eye care, schedule your appointment with Glenn K. Davis, II, M.D., today at our offices in Pulaski (540) 980-1965 or Galax (276) 236-8307. Be sure to revisit our blog for future updates and stay in touch by liking us on Facebook.