What Does a Vision Test Determine?

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Regular eye exams are important not only for maintaining good vision but also for ensuring the health of your eyes. The board-certified ophthalmologists at Clewner & Kelly Eye Center in Boca Raton, FL can help you see better by issuing a lens prescription as well as help you understand your risk of certain vision-threatening medical issues. Learn more about what your eye doctor can determine from a vision test.

Visual acuity

The basic purpose of a vision test is to determine how sharp your sight is. At Clewner & Kelly Eye Center in Boca Raton, FL, our ophthalmologists will determine your visual acuity and, for those with less-than-perfect vision, they’ll produce a lens prescription. If you can clearly see objects that are 20 feet away, you are considered to have normal vision. But if you’re one of the millions with a refraction error, meaning you are unable to see objects at specific distances, your vision test will also determine what error (or errors) your eyes have. More than 150 million Americans need glasses or contact lenses due to refractive errors, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism.

If you are nearsighted

Myopia, commonly called nearsightedness, is the most common type of refraction error and the most common reason for people to need an eyewear prescription. An estimated three in five people with a glasses or contact lens prescription have myopia. In nearsighted people, the shape of the eye causes faraway objects to appear blurry, while closer ones are sharp and clear. Myopia tends to run in families, and it’s often diagnosed in childhood or adolescence.

If you are farsighted

Hyperopia, commonly called farsightedness, affects an estimated 5% – 10% of Americans, making it considerably less common than myopia. Those with hyperopia can see objects clearly at a distance but have difficulty seeing things nearby. Farsightedness is often present at birth, and it typically runs in families.

If you have astigmatism

About one in three people are estimated to have astigmatism, which is caused by a defect in the curvature of the surface of the eye (cornea). Normally, the cornea is equally curved on all sides, but for people with astigmatism, the front surface of the cornea has a steeper curve in one direction than the others. Astigmatism can create blurry vision, and it can be present in people who are either farsighted or nearsighted. While astigmatism alone is less common, it is possible.

If you have presbyopia

Presbyopia is also called age-related farsightedness, and it typically begins around middle age. Individuals with presbyopia have difficulty seeing clearly at close distances, causing them to do things like holding reading materials away from their faces to see them clearly. Presbyopia is extremely common in adults over the age of 55; it’s estimated that as many as 80% of North American adults between 45 and 55 years of age have presbyopia.

Your range of peripheral vision

In addition to determining your visual acuity and refraction errors, a vision test will also determine your range of peripheral vision. At Clewner & Kelly Eye Center in Boca Raton, FL, this is done using a Tangent screen exam, which measures how much you can see from the sides of your eyes. If results are abnormal, that can signal a serious underlying vision or health condition, including diabetes, glaucoma, high blood pressure, age-related macular degeneration, tumors, thyroid conditions, pituitary disorders, retinal detachment, or stroke.

Other eye health issues

Our team may recommend other tests depending on your family medical history, including ones to assess the health of your eyelids, cornea, lenses, iris, and conjunctiva. This could include dilating your pupils to examine the retina, retinal blood vessels, optic nerve, and macula.

See better with regular vision tests

Billions of people around the world require vision correction, but many people aren’t able to see clearly because they lack a vision prescription for glasses or contact lenses. But there is no reason for Boca Raton, FL residents to live with poor vision, as the ophthalmologists at Clewner & Kelly Eye Center can quickly examine their vision and set them up with corrective lenses to help them see clearly for years to come. If you feel like you need a vision test, contact us today.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.