Optometrist vs. Ophthalmologist vs. Optician

Eye Doctor Serving Mobile, Alabama and the nearby Gulf Coast Area

Authored by:

A young man having his eyes examined by the optometristYou care about your eye health and your vision. How do you make sure you’re “seeing” the right doctor for these things? What’s the difference between an optometrist, ophthalmologist and optician? Let’s take a closer look:

  • Ophthalmologists are doctors who specialize in eye surgery, and the diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases. Their area of expertise includes cataracts, poor vision, age-related macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy, and many other serious problems that can rob you of your vision. They must complete at least another 8 years of specialty medical training after they earn an undergraduate degree. They can provide vision prescriptions for glasses and contacts if they need to.
  • Optometrists are the Doctors of Optometry (OD) that prescribe glasses and contact lenses. They perform your annual or bi-annual eye exam. After undergraduate school, optometrists have completed several years of training at an optometry school.
  • Opticians are not doctors but they make sure your glasses and contacts are properly fitted. They can help you purchase the right pair of glasses, and ensure they fit on your face as perfectly as possible. They also make adjustments to glasses if you are unhappy with the fit after wearing them for a while. Opticians must have a license and they must have completed the certification required by the American Board of Opticianry.

They all have some things in common. They have to complete a certain number of continuing education hours in order to maintain a license to practice. Ophthalmologists have the most training and education, and are qualified to treat serious eye health problems and diseases. You should see an ophthalmologist like Dr. Walton if you think you may have an eye disease or if you want surgery to improve your vision.

Schedule a Consultation to Learn More About Our Ophthalmologist

Dr. Chris Walton is an experienced ophthalmologist who has been providing eye care, LASIK, cataract surgery and other ophthalmological services to people in the Gulf Coast area for many years. If you have a question about your eyes or your vision, please don’t hesitate to call us at 251-341-3385. We’re happy to answer your questions and let you know whether Dr. Walton’s services include your area of concern.

category: