The term “optometry” is derived from the combination of two Greek words “opsins” meaning “view” and “matron” meaning “measure.” The word found its place in the English dictionary when optometer, the instrument for measuring vision, was invented.
How To Choose A Perfect Doctor For Your Vision & Eye Care?
# 1. What is optometry?
Optometry is a branch of medical or health care profession, a science of dealing with examination of eyes and the visual systems applicable for abnormalities or defects of eyes. This branch deals typically with medical diagnosis and management of eye disorders or diseases. Optometry had begun as a small field traditionally, with an objective of refractive error correction in eyesight defects, using spectacles, but its scope has been extended in modern time. It has become a more elaborate profession and its scope has been extended to other eye conditions.
# 2. An Optometrist
Optometry has become an extremely specialized medical field in the modern world. An optometrist is a term related to optometry, and it refers to a person who is qualified in this field. Optometry, in modern time, has evolved as an emerging field which is established and regulated in many countries. The person entering into this field requires a specific qualification and intensive medical training in the diagnosis and management of ocular disease. For instance, the requisite qualification is an O.D. degree in the United States and Canada. The qualification is given a specific name in various other countries. An Optometrist can work within the scope of work related to his field. Some eyes-related disorders are not within the scope of optometrists and referred to ophthalmologists, which is an advanced profession in this field.
# 3. The distinction between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist
The distinction in titles “Optometrist” and “Ophthalmologist” is confusing and misconstruing for laymen because both provide a variety of eye care services. Both an optometrist and ophthalmologist can diagnose and treat certain eye conditions. Practically, an Optometrist has a degree of Doctor of Optometry and an Ophthalmologist is a medical doctor (M.D.) specializing in eye care and even surgery which can’t be performed by the optometrists. The optometrists complete four years of undergraduate study. The ophthalmologists complete four years of medical school and requisite residency (hospital-based training) thereafter before becoming fully qualified in optometry. There is, however, a third title ‘Optician”, but this just relates to vision care and the person holding this title and requisite qualification deals with vision problems and preparing of suitable spectacles. This title is not a medical school degree and is inferior to the above two titles.
# 4. Doctors for your vision and eye care
We have discussed the above titles of professional who can be visited for various eyes- or vision-related problems. The title “Optometrist” is in the middle of Ophthalmologist and Optician but can be visited for most eyes-related problems, unless a problem is too severe, and surgery is the probable treatment. An Optometrist is well-versed in vision care and eye care services. This medical professional focus on regular vision cares and prescribes eyeglasses and contact lens, wherever necessary.
The Optometrists can do the following jobs:
– Perform eye exams
– Treat conditions like nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism
– Provide poor-vision aids and vision treatment
– Prescribe and fit eyeglasses and contact lenses
– Can prescribe certain medications for eyes- or vision-related problems
– Diagnose eye conditions like glaucoma, cataracts, conjunctivitis, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration
– Can offer advice for routine eye surgical conditions in pre- or post-operative care
# 5. Right doctor to visit
Opticians are not eye doctors, but Optometrists and Ophthalmologists are. You can visit an Optician for your vision-related problems and for fixing eyeglasses or contact lens. They are the professionals with the right equipment’s to give your eye some aid. For most eye disorders, you needn’t visit an Ophthalmologist’s clinic. The optometrists can do best for your eye treatment without a risk. Thus, you choose a doctor who is most appropriate for your vision care.