Online Eye Exams: To Do or Not to Do?
Convenience is king, who wouldn’t want to be able to save a little time by not having to make a trip to the eye doctor? For many, the idea of being able to get their eyeglass prescription & buy some hip new glasses without having to take time out from school or work to get to an eye doctor appointment sounds super appealing. The thing is, this kind of shortcut could create some major issues ahead that will end up costing you more time, more money, and could impact your overall eye health.
Here are a few things you need to know about these online eye “exams” & vision screenings that may make you think twice about saying goodbye to your local eye doctor at Houston, TX.
First off, it’s important to know that an online eye test — even if it’s been dubbed an “online eye exam” — does not, in any capacity, effectively evaluate the actual health of your eyes.
Online eye tests are a great tool to simply allow you to check your vision between your regular eye exams by the experts at HTX Eye Care.
There are two things that an online eye test measures, your visual acuity and refractive error. In some cases, other online vision tests may include contrast sensitivity & color blindness.
But these measurements aren’t effective at providing you with any kind of real and valuable knowledge about the actual health of your eyes or whether or not you have any conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, or macular degeneration which could end up getting worse and affecting your sight irreparably if left undiagnosed and untreated.
If you do choose to give an online vision test a try, please be aware that you should still continue to have routine eye exams and schedule your comprehensive eye exam in Houston, TX. A comprehensive eye exam is important to have as it is the only way to detect and diagnose vision changes and potential problems. It is the best way to ensure your eyes are healthy and free from sight-threatening conditions.
Please note that although results of some online eye tests may have been validated recently, but with limited studies, this technology is still relatively new and cannot diagnose sight-threatening conditions.
Simply put, more research is needed to guarantee that the overall accuracy of a contact lens, or eyeglass prescription, that has been quickly generated by an online vision test, would be comparable to a prescription determined in a face to face comprehensive eye exam in Houston, TX.
When going the online eye exam route, it’s important to know that there are some real risks involved.
First and foremost, with an online exam, there is no trained eye care professional present to knowledgeably and carefully examine the health of your eyes. As mentioned previously, online eye exams cannot properly determine if you have glaucoma, cataracts, diabetic eye disease, and other eye or general health problems that your eye doctor can more accurately detect during a comprehensive eye exam. Early detection of these problems can drastically improve your treatment outcomes, and potentially prevent vision loss or even legal blindness.
There is a great risk of getting an incorrect prescription for contact lenses or eyeglasses with online vision tests that are self-administered and not given by a professional eye doctor.
If you fail to take the online vision tests correctly, it’s possible you may experience uncomfortable problems such as headaches and eyestrain symptoms with your new and improper eyeglass or contact prescription and you also won’t be seeing as clearly as you should for driving or performing daily tasks that require you to see clearly.
Another thing to consider is the aftermath of a poor and improper test result. For instance, if you think your prescription might be incorrect, how does one go about resolving the problem of incorrect prescriptions if there’s no one to discuss the issues you might be facing? Do you have to take out more time to retake the online “vision test” again? Do you have to spend more money to pay for the second test, with zero guarantees that the updated results will be any better?
We tend to think that if something saves us time, that it also saves us money but that isn’t necessarily the case. When we take into account the validity of these online exams and how much difficulty it could potentially cause if used in lieu of scheduling comprehensive eye exam in Houston, TX that is performed by a professional optometrist or ophthalmologist, you may think twice before skipping a face to face examination.
Also, the cost of an online vision test usually isn’t covered by vision insurance or health insurance. So, if you have a vision benefits plan, your co-pay cost for a full comprehensive eye exam may actually end up being less expensive than the cost of taking an online eye test.
While convenience is king, your eye health isn’t something to take a risk on just to save a trip to your optometrist. It is absolutely essential for you to have a one on one, face-to-face comprehensive eye exam with the eye care professionals at HTX Eye Care on a regular basis to safeguard your eye health and to continue to enjoy a lifetime of great vision.