Optometry is a health care profession that deals with the examination of the eyes, and the visual system in general. It also involves the diagnosis and treatment of visual defects and abnormalities. An individual that specializes in optometry is known as an optometrist. Previously, the optometry used to focus solely on the correction of refractive errors by using spectacles. However, it has evolved over time into diagnosis and management of ocular diseases. A lot of people confuse the different types of eye specialists. Some of the common ones include ophthalmologists, optometrists, and optician. This needs to be set straight, as it’s important for you to be seeing the right specialist for your eye care needs.
: Optometrists are eye care professionals that take care of primary vision care, which involves sight testing and correction to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of the changes in vision. An optometrist is a not a medical doctor. They are referred to as health care professionals. However, they do receive a doctor of optometry. They receive this after completing 3 years of college, then another 4 years in the school of optometry. As earlier mentioned, they are trained to carry out eye examinations, vision tests, and also diagnose eye defects, and prescribe the right corrective lenses. They are also qualified to prescribe drugs for eye diseases.
Opticians are technicians that are trained to carry out things like designing, verifying and fitting eyeglasses. This also involves fitting the right lenses and frames of eyeglasses, contact lens, and other devices to correct eyesight. They handle the technical part of the eye health care job. They carry out the prescription of optometrists an ophthalmologist. However, they have their limitations. They cannot diagnose, test or treat visual defects. They also cannot write prescriptions. All they do is the technical part of the job.
Below are some of the common reasons why people see optometrists: • Regular headaches: It usually takes a long time, before people notice that their eyesight has been deteriorating. However, you should see an optometrist if you have frequent headaches. This is usually an indication that your eyesight is getting worse. An optometrist would carry out an eye examination. • Blurry vision: You should go see an optometrist if you notice that your vision is becoming blurry. This condition might have a more serious underlying disease such as retinal detachment, and so on. • Eye fatigue: You should consult your optometrist if you notice that your eye gets fatigued quickly. This could be a symptom of a severe condition.
References Cold, F., Health, E., Disease, H., Disease, L., Management, P., & Conditions, S. et al. (2018). What Causes Eye Problems?. Retrieved from https://www.webmd.com/eye-health/common-eye-problems Eye News: Visual flicker test may detect dementia more quickly and easily than MRIs and other tests. (2018). Retrieved from https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/ Rosser, S. (2001). The Eye Book: Eye and Eye Problems Explained. Optometry And Vision Science, 78(12), 865. doi: 10.1097/00006324-200112000-00007