Ophthalmologists Vs Optometrists: Who do you need to see?

Sat Mar 05 2022

As is the case with most medical fields, different specialists address different needs when it comes to eye care. Understanding which of these specialists you should visit when you have a problem is crucial, as going to the wrong person will only end up being a waste of time and effort for you. With that in mind, keep reading to know the difference between optometrists, ophthalmologists, and opticians

What are the 3 types of eye experts?

The three types of eye experts are as follows:

1. Opticians:

Opticians are specialists who assist with eye care needs. They are not doctors and cannot perform diagnostic tests to help you understand what is wrong with your eyes.

2. Ophthalmologists:

An ophthalmologist is a doctor who specialises in eye care and vision-related issues. More often than not, when you face any difficulty with your eyes (such as blurry vision), this is the doctor that you need to see.

3. Optometrists:

Optometrists are doctors who can diagnose your vision problems. However, they do not perform any corrective surgeries to correct the same.

Difference between optometrists, ophthalmologists and optician

The difference between optometrists, ophthalmologists, and opticians lies in the definitions and the work that these experts carry out. For instance,

  1. An optician would take the facial measurements required for fitting someone with glasses, check your contact lenses, and even help you buy the suitable types of eyeglasses and contact lenses based on your needs and aesthetic preferences.
  2. An ophthalmologist will diagnose and treat a range of eye health problems such as vision loss, glaucomacataract, burns, refractive errorsdiabetic retinopathydry eyes, and so on. This field has many sub-specialities, such as paediatric specialists, cornea specialists, glaucoma specialists, neuro-ophthalmologists, retina specialists, and oculoplastic surgeons.
  3. Optometrists are experts who have been trained to test whether you can focus your eyes correctly, see colours correctly, check visual acuity, diagnose problems with the vision (such as nearsightedness, farsightedness etc), prescribe glasses, etc.

When should you see each?

You should see an:

  1. Optician when you need to buy new glasses or contact lenses.
  2. Ophthalmologist if you experience blurry vision, headaches, problems focussing your eyes, eye pain or even dryness and redness in the eyes.
  3. Optometrist when you sense that your eye number has changed or that you may be having trouble seeing despite your glasses. 

Why CFS?

At Centre For Sight, we work with experts who can efficiently diagnose and treat a range of eye health problems. As a result, no matter what symptoms you are experiencing, your first step should be to head to the nearest CFS and get checked out by our doctors. To know more, get in touch today

Article: Ophthalmologists Vs Optometrists: Who do you need to see?
Author: CFS Editorial Team  |   Mar 05 2022 | UPDATED 03:20 IST

*The views expressed here are solely those of the author in his private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Centre for Sight.

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