By Brian "Shorti" Coyle on January 26, 2011Recently a friend of mine received two traffic citations at the same time which required him to take the online defensive driving course. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the course, it is 14 chapters of all the safety rules and regulations of driving in the state of Indiana. Nothing that I look forward to ever having to take, I listened to most of it while my friend used my computer to take the course. One thing that did stand out to me was the section explaining how bad vision impairs driving and could potentially lead to an accident. The driving course pointed out that since most drivers renew their license on average ever seven years that during that time period your vision could change, hence affecting your driving acuity on the roads. The course suggested that drivers get routine eye exams so that they are aware of the conditions of their eyes, and that their prescription is updated prior to renewing or taking the driver’s test. At Dr. Tavel, we recommend coming in for a routine eye exam every year, even if you don’t need new glasses or contact lenses. Often times the vision evaluation at the BMV is not designed to give you a comprehensive eye exam. Our board certified optometrists can not only make you aware of any changes in your vision, but also look for early signs of glaucoma, cataracts or other vision related diseases. They can also suggest the right lenses for your lifestyle, so in the case of driving, they can offer Drivewear or Purifier® polarized sunglasses. Although I wouldn’t wish the defensive driving course on anyone, there was some good information about how we all can become safer drivers, as well as become more aware of our vision condition on and off the roads.