FAQs - Eye Diseases, Vision Care, Eye Exams, Contact Lens, Eye Wear
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Frequently Asked Questions About Eye and Vision Care

General Eye & Vision Care Questions

Optometrist study a four-year degree program in science followed by four years of post-graduate studies in optometry, as well as complete a mandatory clinical rotation in eye care before being deemed to have gained the knowledge and skills to become a registered optometrist.

This gives eye doctors the ability to assess vision, eye and general health problems. This also gives them the ability to prescribe eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct refractive errors.

Can glasses correct color blindness?
No. Color blindness is caused by a gene that causes a malfunction in the rod photoreceptors, so that different wavelengths of light overlap more, and are less distiguishable from one another. This CANNOT be corrected with glasses, however, there is a special lens that enhances the differences between the wavelengths, and thereby makes them more easy to differentiate, giving the color-deficient wearer the ability to distinguish between certain colors that they previously couldn’t.

Yes. Hyperthyroidism causes changes in the tissue surrounding the eyes, specifically the muscles and connective tissue. This can result in eyes having a ‘bulging’ appearance, feeling dry and/or scratchy, tearing excessively, swelling of the upper lids, or bags under the eyes. One may also have difficulty moving eyes around, and there may be resulting double vision.

This condition is called Myokymia and it involves one or more of the upper or lower eyelid muscles twitching involuntarily. It is an annoying occurrence, but it is usually benign and of no consequence. It is exacerbated by caffeine, stress and fatigue. So cutting down on caffeine intake, reducing stress and resting more will help to lessen the frequency of the twitch. Drinking tonic water has also shown some success in eliminating or reducing the muscle twitch.

Since a child is not always able to communicate location and severity of symptoms clearly, it is important that they are examined by an optometrist as soon as possible, to rule out complications from injuries that can cause serious issues.

Macular degeneration is a progressive degeneration of the pigment and tissue at the area of the retina responsible for central, fine detailed vision. We can help slow down the progression of the condition (and thereby maintain functional vision for longer) by incorporating lutein-rich vegetables into our diet, adding an Omega-3 supplement into our diet, wearing sun protection whenever outside to limit the eye’s exposure to UV, and lastly, smokers should quit smoking to reduce the progression of the disease. There is a strong hereditary component to this condition, but by doing the above, one can mitigate the risk factors as much as possible.

No it won’t hurt your eyes, but it is not recommended. You will strain your eyes in order to read, write, etc. Straining your eyes is not healthy and can lead to headaches from the stress on your eyes.

If you injure your eye, the state of injury will vary the plan action. Corneal abrasion, pink eye, some sports-related injuries can be treated by your local optometrist. If there is trauma to the actual eye socket or to the cornea you will have to receive attention from emergency medical services or an ophthalmologist.

Yes, poor vision is hereditary. Poor vision can, also, be caused by an injury to the eye.

We recommend that you get a new pair of glasses every year because we recommend adjusting the prescription to your vision needs.

Eye doctors are crucial to your overall health. Similar to a general practitioner, it is important to see an eye doctor for your yearly wellness exam. Your eyes can be the first indicator to other serious health issues. During a wellness exam, the doctor will check for signs of glaucoma, high blood pressure, ocular diseases, etc. Dilation of the eyes can show the potential of diabetes, strokes, macular degeneration and overall health of the body.


Contact lens prescriptions include the Optometrist’s recommendation for brand, materials, size and curvature to achieve your best possible vision. Contact lenses fit directly on the eye versus glasses that sit further away from the eye (also known as the vertex distance).

In most cases your eye glasses prescription should be vaild for two years but your optometrist may recommend you get it updated sooner for medical reasons. In any event, your optometrist generally recommends to visit the eye doctor every year for an eye exam to update your prescription because of changes to your vision and to closely monitor and manage your health.

In some cases your prescription may expire after a year if your optometrist has a medical reason for it.

Eye Exam

A comprehensive eye exam performed by an optometrist examines your entire eye health and visual system, as well as your prescription. It is an important part of preventative health care: think of an eye exam as a physical for your eyes.

Eye exams can detect eye diseases and disorders such as glaucoma, cataracts, retinal detachment, and macular degeneration. It can also detect other health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure and brain tumors.

An eye exam includes:

•An entire case history; including past and present vision and medical issues, as well as a detailed family history.
•An analysis of the patient’s visual needs at home, work, school and play
•Measurement of the visual acuity (sharpness of vision) of each eye
•Binocular vision assessment: determining how well the eyes work together
•Diagnosis of the refractive status of the eye (focusing power of the eye)
•Eye health check: assessment of the internal and external health of the eye with specially designed instruments to uncover anything from a minor lid inflammation to a major retinal disease, or even a serious condition elsewhere in the body.
•A neurological assessment of the visual system, including a review of the pupil reactions, eye muscle movement, and an assessment of the peripheral vision.

All of these tests are used in the final analysis to determine the appropriate prescription lenses to treat refractive and visual problems, to develop a program of eye training exercises, or to recommend medical or surgical treatment.

Recommendations for future eye care can be made based on the history of eye health and the results of the examination. The final analysis of the eye exam includes an optometrist’s professional knowledge, training, experience and judgment.

Most people believe eye exam is only necessary if you wear glasses – that’s a common misconception. Many serious eye conditions don’t have obvious symptoms; some eye diseases only show symptoms when the condition is advanced, difficult, or even impossible to treat.

A comprehensive eye exam provides the full assurance of vision and eye health. A store sight test, school vision screening, or reading an eye chart at the ministry of transportation does nothing to determine if your eyes are healthy. Having routine eye exams by an optometrist ensures good vision, eye health and peace of mind.

The AOA – American Optometric Association recommends having your children’s eyes tested at 6 months, 3 years, then annually once they reach the age of 6. Frequency of eye examinations may change depending on high-risk factors such as premature birth, low birth weight, family history.

Contact Lenses

Contact lens prescriptions include the Optometrist’s recommendation for brand, materials, size and curvature to achieve your best possible vision. Contact lenses fit directly on the eye versus glasses that sit further away from the eye (also known as the vertex distance).

Contact lenses are classified as a medical device by the FDA and thus are regulated differently than glasses. All medical devices provide benefits while posing certain risks, these risks are minimized if your optometrist dispenses your contact lenses based on your contact lens prescription.

Improperly fitting contact lenses may cause blurred vision, eye strain, eye pain, headaches or redness and swelling of the eye that can range from mild to severe.

The most serious complications include infection and corneal ulcer, which can develop quickly and can lead to irreversible vision loss if not treated appropriately.

Contact lenses are medical devices as defined by the FDA/Health American. As with all medical devices there are several risks involved in using them, which are decreased when dispensed by a licensed Optometrist.

Ill-fitting contact lenses can cause redness, swelling, blurred vision, eyestrain and headaches. More serious complications can include infection and ulcers of the cornea (front surface of the eye).

Conjunctivitis - Pink Eye

How to get rid of pink eye?
Treamtent for pink eye varies, depending on the cause of the pink eye (eitiology).

If it’s bacterial, an antibiotic drop will be required to clear up the infection. If the cause is viral, there is no treatment, but cool compresses will help to make the eye more comfortable over the 7-10 days it will take for the virus to clear on it’s own. Allergic pink eye can be treated with anti-allergy medication, allergy drops, and by limiting one’s exposure to the allergen.


A baby’s vision develops by leaps and bounds from birth to 3 years old. The neurolgical connections between the eye and the brain are formed in response to the visual stimulus that the baby’s eyes are seeing. In the case of a cataract, there is an opacity in the eye that blocks or hinders the image of the stimulus from reaching the retina (where the photoreceptors respond to the stimulus and form connections with the brain). Because the infant never sees a clear image, they do not develop the ability to see a clear image, and the eye becomes amblyopic (or lazy). It is important to recognize and remove a cataract at the earliest age possible, in order for normal vision to develop.

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