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Eye Care on The Go

Safety behind the wheel As a matter of fact, road safety depends on a number of visual abilities like the ability to see both near and far ahead, side or peripheral vision, night vision and color vision, plus many others.

Distance vision is crucial because it lets you observe the stretch of road in front and see any danger that might be present. Most importantly, it gives you a chance to react early and avoid any accidents. Alternatively, if you struggle with distance vision you may not see the hazards in time to stop an accident.

You also need peripheral vision, which allows you see both sides of your vehicle, which is important to see other cars, animals and pedestrians without needing to look away from the road lying ahead. Being able to see peripherally is also important when changing lanes and turning. Make sure you know how to use your side and rearview mirrors. Check they're angled properly, to help your side vision.

Road safety is also highly dependent on good depth perception. It helps you measure distances correctly in crowded traffic, change lanes and pass other vehicles on the road. Accurate depth perception needs proper functioning in both of your eyes. If you've lost visual acuity in one eye, it's advised to check with an optometrist to determine if it is safe for you to drive. It may be suggested that you stop driving until your vision is corrected to achieve proper depth perception.

Near vision focusing or being able to accommodate instantly also comes into use when driving. This is the capability to shift your focus from something in the distance to something near, like from the road to the speedometer. For those 45 or older you might have trouble with near vision, and it might be helpful for you to get glasses or another corrective device to see objects up close. Call your eye doctor to talk about the options.

It's best not to wait until you renew or get your driver's license to make sure your vision is in check. You never want to endanger your life or the lives of others on the road! If you think your vision isn't up to par, make an appointment with your optometrist, and get a thorough eye exam as soon as you can.