What is an ophthalmologist?
An ophthalmologist – Eye M.D. – is a medical doctor who specializes in eye and vision care. Ophthalmologists are specially trained to provide the full spectrum of eye care, from prescribing glasses and contact lenses to complex and delicate eye surgery.
What is an optometrist?
An optometrist - Doctor of Optometry (OD) is licensed to practice optometry, not medicine. The practice of optometry traditionally involves examining the eye for the purpose of prescribing and dispensing corrective lenses, screening vision to detect certain eye abnormalities, and prescribing medications for certain eye diseases.
What is an optician?
An optician is trained to design, verify and fit eyeglass lenses and frames to correct eyesight. They use visual correction prescriptions supplied by ophthalmologists or optometrists to provide eyeglasses for the customers.
How often should I get an eye exam?
Many sight-threatening diseases, if detected early, can be cured or treated to prevent, or slow, the progression of any vision loss.
Children should receive their first comprehensive eye examination before the age of 3, unless a specific condition or history of family childhood vision problems warrants an earlier examination.
People ages 20 to 30 should have an eye exam every two years, unless visual changes, pain, flashes of light, new floaters, injury, or tearing occurs. Then, immediate care is necessary.
Yearly exams become important in the late thirties when changes in vision and focus along with eye diseases are more likely to develop.
People with diabetes are at risk for several eye disorders, including diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts, and should have eye examinations every year.
Squinting, blinking, rubbing eyes frequently, headaches, changes in vision and difficulty with visual concentration within arm's length may be signs of eye problems and should be checked immediately by your eye doctor.