The Pros and Cons of Eye Exams: 10 Reasons Why They Can't Replace Your Eye Doctor


Did you know it takes up to 12 years of study before an ophthalmologist actually becomes qualified to diagnose, treat, and operate on eye conditions?

Yes, that’s twelve years of studying how the body works, how everything is connected, diseases, and illnesses. There’s a lot that doctors pick up during that training time that cannot be translated into a software program. This is one of the biggest reasons why it’s difficult to replace your eye doctor.

Sadly, with the increase in online eye examination software a lot of people have the misguided conception that the results they receive online give them a comprehensive overview of the state and health of their eyes. There are however some benefits to these online tests. We’re going to look at some of the pros and cons of taking such an eye exam online.

Pros of Eye Exams

Online eye exams do have some benefits. While not ideal, they do help in the following manner:

1. Can Be Conducted from Home

If you love convenience then online exams may be an attractive service to you. The fact that they can be taken anywhere where a computer and internet access exists makes them a desirable service.

2. Allow Rapid Generation of a Prescription Order

This is especially useful in the event that you lose your spectacles and you’re in a foreign country or somewhere where you cannot easily access a doctor, but have an internet connection.

Thanks to the prescription you receive online within minutes of completing the exam, you’ll be able to have your glasses fitted in with the right lenses or replaced completely.

3. Helps Monitor Changes Every Time You Change Spectacles

If your family has a history of eye diseases or low vision, being able to keep tabs on your prescriptions will be useful to you. You’ll be able to generate and keep these prescriptions so you can talk at great length and in detail with a doctor when you finally have the chance to visit one.

Cons of Eye Exams

These are the downsides to these online eye exams that nobody ever tells you about.

1. Limited Test

This is one of the biggest challenges with this online exam. There is only so much you can learn about your eyes. These tests are mostly just ideal for getting a prescription and nothing more. A lot of these websites don’t offer or have features to check for contrast sensitivity and or color blindness, making them very limited.

2. Can’t Detect Vision Problems

You’ll hardly ever see these companies telling you that their tests cannot detect the most important vision problems that currently affect millions of Americans. For example, these tests cannot tell you that you have pink eye, macular degeneration, cataracts or even glaucoma. This puts you at risk of going blind when it could have been prevented if you had visited a doctor in time.

3. Limited Knowledge

As mentioned earlier, specialist eye doctors spend years in school learning the differences between the different eye conditions and ailments. Online exams are limited in that they only feature the most basic tools to check eyes, and cannot interpret and explain your results to you.

4. Prescription Might be Erroneous

It’s possible for human error to occur when measuring refractive errors. However, your doctor can always re-check and re-test right there and then. When you take your exam online, and there’s an error, most of these websites have little customer care in how to regulate and fix this problem, leaving you in a bind. So it’s better to simply go to the real doctor, pay the eye exam cost, and have everything done right the first time round.

Top 10 Reasons Why Eye Examinations Can’t Replace Your Eye Doctor

As much as we want to incorporate technology into our everyday lives and clinical experiences, there are some things that just require you to visit the doctor. If you’re still not convinced about why you should schedule regular eye examinations with your doctor, here are a few reasons why these exams can never replace your doctor.

  1. The eye is complex and needs someone who understands it.
  2. Only a qualified doctor has extensive experience to truly understand eye problems.
  3. Your eye doctor can tell you the health state of your eyes.
  4. Visiting a doctor is cheaper in the long run.
  5. You can ask your doctor the best treatment plan – you can’t do that online.
  6. You can discuss Your fears and worries and receive truthful advice.
  7. You can benefit from insurance programs offered by your company.
  8. You’ll know exactly what’s causing your poor vision.
  9. You’ll be able to receive surgery immediately in the event of an emergency like retinal detachment before it’s too late.
  10. You’ll be able to slow down loss of vision by following treatment options suggested by the doctor.

Visit the Eye Doctor – It Just Might Save Your Eyes

If all you need is a prescription for eye glasses, it might not be such a big deal getting your prescription online. However, in order to diagnose eye conditions it’s imperative that you visit a doctor. When you are displaying pink eye symptoms, don’t put it off to allergies or the need for new spectacles and turn online – go see the doctor. You’ll be better for it and you’ll thank us later. Take care of your eyes, you only get one pair.

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