If you are considering going to EyeCare Associates for an eye exam, it's important to understand that all visits are not the same. Making an appointment for a comprehensive eye exam can help determine how healthy your eyes are and if your vision has changed. But if you're hoping to also get contacts to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism, this exam won't be enough.
The last thing you want is to find out the appointment you've scheduled is not what you expected. When it comes to booking a comprehensive eye exam vs. a contact lens exam, here's what you'll want to know beforehand. Learn more about the types of exams you can receive at EyeCare Associates, and which is best for you.
Getting your eyes regularly tested should be a priority. A comprehensive eye exam not only detects changes in vision, but also determines the health of your eyes. While you might expect to notice if something is wrong with your eyes, there are actually some eye diseases that have no obvious signs in the early stages.
Usually, the earlier you catch and treat serious eye conditions, the less likely you are to suffer vision loss. This makes booking an appointment at EyeCare Associates all the more important.
Common eye diseases that your optometrist may check for include:
Glaucoma: This includes a group of eye diseases that can result in vision loss due to optic nerve damage.
Diabetic retinopathy: This disease damages blood vessels in the eye and if left untreated could lead to blindness.
Age-related macular degeneration: This involves the breakdown over time of a portion of the eye's light-sensitive tissue.
Cataracts: This is caused by a clouding of the lens and could lead to vision loss.
The purpose of a periodic comprehensive eye exam is to maintain your eye's health. During the exam, a EyeCare Associates doctor will check your vision to determine how clearly you are seeing, as well as detect any sight problems and prevent vision loss that may occur if left untreated.
You can expect to undergo a variety of tests, depending on what your doctor feels is necessary. To get a better idea, the EyeCare Associates optical care team first takes a patient history. Then, they may conduct some of the following tests:
Stereopsis exam: This tests for depth perception.
Testing refraction: This test involves finding the lens power needed for you to see clearly.
Eye dilation: For this, your doctor will administer special eye drops to temporarily expand the pupil. This allows them to see what's going on inside the eye and make sure all the structures are healthy.
Visual acuity test: This helps to determine how well you are seeing and usually involves reading letters off a chart on the wall.
Pressure testing: This checks the pressure of your eye and helps to ensure you are not developing certain diseases, such as glaucoma.
Visual field test: This test will check your vision for possible blind spots.
Colorblindness test: This will show your doctor if you are having trouble perceiving certain colors.
If you're hoping to replace your eyeglasses and wear contacts instead, this requires additional tests that are not given during a typical comprehensive exam.
Contact lenses are categorized as medical devices and need specific testing. When scheduling your appointment at EyeCare Associates, let the staff member know that you're seeking contact lenses. Our doctors can often complete the contact lens exam in conjunction with your comprehensive eye appointment.
In the contact lens exam, you can expect an EyeCare Associates optometrist to do the following:
Measure the size and shape of your eye to ensure your lenses fit properly and are comfortable.
Measure both your pupils and irises to make sure the lenses fit well.
Measure your cornea, the clear outer surface of your eye, to find the right curvature and size for your lenses. If your eye has an irregular curvature, you may need to be fitted for what's known as a toric contact lens. This can help to compensate for some distortions and provide better vision.
Learn more about Clarkson Eyecare’s specialty contact lens services
Conduct tests to be sure you don't have any issues that could interfere with successful lens wear.
All of this will help your optometrist understand the type of lens and prescription that's best for you. After the initial exam, EyeCare Associates will ask you to come back for a follow-up appointment to be certain the prescription is working for you and your lenses fit as they should.
Even if your contact lens fitting is done at the same time as your comprehensive eye exam, keep in mind that additional testing will take a bit more time and will likely involve an additional fee.
Ultimately, it's up to you to decide what type of appointment is best for your needs. However, the doctors and staff at EyeCare Associates are glad to help and answer any questions. So don't be afraid to call our office and discuss the options before making your choice.