What Patients Can Expect On Their First Visit to Their Eye Doctors

When considering their overall well-being, many people neglect to consider the state of their eyes. Individuals without any visual problems would do well to visit the eye doctor for a routine exam once every two years. If you don’t wear contacts or glasses, you may wonder what such an exam is all about. You can rest easy as appointments with eye doctors in Indianapolis are a standard and worry-free experience.

Eye Exam

Standard Eye Tests

There are a few tests you can expect to undergo in any eye examination. The visual acuity test, which requires patients to cover their eyes and read letters of decreasing size from a chart, is what most people will recognize.

The cover test is equally as simple. Your doctor will cover each eye in turn and have the exposed eye follow a light to test for warning signs of “lazy eye”. For the slit-lamp eye exam, most eye doctors place your chin on a chin rest and proceed to examine your eyes closely with a light to check for infection or disease. This procedure may be combined with a “puff test”, where a short spurt of air is blown into the eye to test pressure and evaluate any risks you might have for glaucoma.

On some visits, your doctor might dilate your eyes to judge the health of your retina. Consider bringing sunglasses, as the dilation will leave your eyes sensitive to light for the next few hours.

Specialized Eye Tests

If your doctor determines that you need eyeglasses or contact lenses, you’ll be asked to undergo a few specialized exams to determine your prescription. A retinoscopy will give the eye doctor an approximation of your ideal prescription. You’ll be asked to focus your eyes on a large target as the doctor examines your pupils under light.

A more precise prescription is determined by means of refraction. A large device is placed over your face that alternates your field of vision through a number of lenses. With each device, you’ll be asked whether your vision is the same, better, or worse than the previous lens. Using this method, the doctor can provide a precise calculation of your levels of myopia, astigmatism, presbyopia, and hyperopia.

What to Expect During a Comprehensive Eye Exam, All About Vision
Eye Exam: What you can expect, Mayo Clinic
How Often Should You Have an Eye Exam?, LiveStrong