Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Big Digital Gets an Eye Exam

As part of the regimen of preventive care that I'm supposed to do for my diabetes, once a year I'm supposed to get an eye exam, where an eye doctor looks into my eye to make sure that the small blood vessels in my retina are doing okay. You know, because sometimes people with diabetes go blind. Which would be bad.

Anyway, even though I only really need that part of the eye exam done, I still get to go through the part where they see which small letters you can read, and which is better? #1? or #2? and some stuff for colorblindness and a part where there's a picture of a red balloon, where all I have to do is look straight ahead. Anyway, I always get a little tense during the whole testing process because, even though I don't feel like I need glasses, I'd hate to screw up on the test and somehow convince someone that I need some help. Anyway, another year, another 20/20. So no worries about that for now.

Once I get done with the testing part, they put some drops in my eyes to numb them. Which always feels weird. And then they check the pressure in my eyes with some kind of device that they touch to my eyes. But I don't feel it because they're numb. And then they give me the eye drops that dilate my pupils, so that the doctor can look around inside my eye. It takes a few minutes for them to really open up, and in the meantime they drop you off in a dimly lit waiting area that for some reason has a variety of reading materials. I say that because after a few minutes of dilation, things start to get blurry up close and reading is no longer a possibility. Unless it's things that are in large print. Which they don't actually have in that waiting area. I know. I checked.

Eventually, I get taken back to the examination room, where I sit and wait for a while longer, and since I can't read, I try to think of things to think about. Eventually the eye doctor arrives and he get up close and shines a light into my eye and has me look in different directions. While he's doing this, there are moments when I see some weird images superimposed on what little I can see of the dark room. Things that look like blood vessels. I asked him and he said that yes, what I'm seeing is the light he's shining in there reflecting off the inside of my eyeball. So that's kinda cool. Anyway, everything was kosher, come back in a year.

Afterward, I get to experience what it must be like to be far-sighted for the next few hours. It's weird because everything looks normal until I try to look at something up close and it's blurry and I can't get it to come into focus. My vision feels just fine, so sometimes it catches me off guard when I look at something up close and it's illegible. So most reading is pretty much out. It's nice that I can actually check my email by using Ctrl+ to zoom everything up to gigantic font sizes, but even that tires my eyes out after a few minutes. Oh, and bright lights look extra special with lines shooting out of them and multicolored bands at the edges. Thankfully this year, it seemed like my eyes recovered a little quicker than last year.

Also I wondered what my eyes look like when they're fully dilated like that, so I took a picture to share.

Eye Exam 2010

I think if you look close you might be able to see my brain.


Liz said...

Glad all is well for another year:)

Crafty said...

And they cross NOW! Then!....