The Best Eye Doctor's Appointment Ever
I recently decided that it would be really helpful to have a Freedom Topaz at home like I have at work. As a result, I decided to contact Blind and Visual services to see if they could purchase one for me. I learned that in order to re-open my case, I had to go to the retinal specialist. Therefore, I went to the rental specialist for the first time in almost two years.
Reasons to avoid the retina specialist
I was pleasantly surprised by how well the appointment went. In previous articles, I have expressed my hesitation with going to the retinal specialist. In my opinion, my vision is pretty stable and there is no point paying a $50 co-pay to hear that my vision is about the same and currently there is not a cure.
Giving my eye doctor another chance
This visit was completely different. My provider reported that there appears to be a slight increase in my left eye. It was also recommended that I get prescription glasses to protect my eyes from the sun and sharpen what I can already see.
Hypertension and vision loss
I personally attribute the slight increase in my left eye to me actively managing my hypertension. I have previously shared the correlation I witnessed with my blood pressure and blurred vision. Specifically, when my blood pressure is elevated, my vision is blurred. I am not sure the scientific reason, but I know it is true because according to my primary care provider blurred vision is a symptom of hypertension. In essence: the body keeps score.
Asking for resources
After my eye exam, I asked my provider about resources for home improvement and additional devices that will assist with activities of daily living. She informed me of the able grant (I plan to look into it and discuss further in a future article). She also shared with me the plethora of assistive devices that blind and visual services offer.
Sharing my experiences with macular degeneration
Lastly, I shared with her my experience writing for Health Union. I encouraged her to share this resource with all of her patients who live with Macular Degeneration. She then asked if I would be interested in speaking at their low vision support group, and I began to smile from ear to ear. I ended the appointment by sharing how freeing it is to share the way eye see it.
What to remember when visiting the doctor
If you are like me, going to the doctor to discuss your visual impairment might trigger a variety of emotions. I think it is important to keep the below in mind:
- You are doing the best you can with what you have.
- If you saw what normal people saw, you would do what normal people do.
- Knowledge is power; the more you know about your eye health the better you can manage it.
- It is important for you to be transparent about your strengths and challenges, so that your provider can share appropriate and meaningful resources. In my opinion, you don’t know what you don’t know.
Overall, just remember that your mindset matters. My cousin, Chris, once told me that your attitude determines your latitude. To me, this means that if you think positive, positive things will come to you... at least that’s the way eye see it.
Does macular degeneration affect your mental health?