Everybody knows when you test drive a car, you need to check where your blind spots are. Your eyes also have natural blind spots. It’s comforting to know that your blinds spots have been with you your entire life, making them insignificant to your vision.
For the human eye, the physiologic or natural blind spot is there due to the placement of the optic nerve. Because the nerve needs an entry point in order to link the eye to the brain, the eye develops around this area sacrificing this small area of vision. The spot is located about 15 degrees to the side of central vision. Often the fellow eye’s field of vision overlaps and makes up for the lack of sensitivity in this area. Even if you are looking with just one eye, the brain fills in the area with what it thinks is supposed to be there.
In the same way, your brain compensates for your natural blind spots, acquired blind spots can arise without the individual knowing. Special field of vision testing is important to diagnose a wide array of vision and neurological conditions. For instance, an enlarged blind spot could point to multiple sclerosis.
A comprehensive eye exam is important to determine not only what you are seeing, but also things you are not seeing. Special testing may be needed properly diagnose these losses and the potential for further problems. Jace Picken, O.D.
Prairie Vision Center, your Moorhead eye doctor for eye exams and eye care
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