At some point on the way to receiving eyewear, most people probably come in contact with one or more health care professionals who specialize in eye care and vision issues. It is important to understand the difference between an optician, an ophthalmologist and an optometrist to ensure that the right choices are made on the way to optimal vision.
An optician is found at most eyewear facilities and is a primary public educator on eye care issues. They must be licensed and registered with the College of Opticians of Ontario (COO). Based on a prescription from an optometrist, an optician will identify and fit the most appropriate glasses, contact lenses or other vision device. Opticians may refer someone with a complex eye condition to a physician.
An optometrist is a Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) and is licensed to deliver primary eye care services. An optometrist uses instruments and procedures to examine, diagnose and treat disease or disorders having to do with vision. An optometrist can diagnose diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts and conditions including nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. An optometrist also may perform minor surgical procedures, for example removing a foreign body from the eye. They can prescribe and fit eyewear and make referrals.
An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor (M.D.) who has been trained in all areas of eye care including prevention, diagnosis and surgical treatment of eye conditions and diseases. They can provide the full range of vision care services from prescribing glasses to performing surgery.
An ophthalmologist can further specialize in one of many areas; diseases of the cornea, glaucoma and other disorders affecting the optic nerve, paediatric ophthalmology and plastic surgery to name a few.
Everyone deserves optimal vision. Your eyecare professionals are there for you and your eyes.
For more information on your vision contact Forsight Eyewear at 905-667-1825 or visit www.forsighteyewear.com.