Eyes are valuable to all of us. Any problem in the eyes comes as a blow to most of us. And, this is one condition when we want to rush to a doctor or an eye specialist hospital. But, which doctor should you go to? Obviously, an eye doctor. But, do you know that not all eye doctors are the same? While we refer to all eye doctors as opticians, we must be able to differentiate between the three different kinds of eye doctors – optometrists, ophthalmologists, and opticians.

What are optometrists?

Optometrists are eye doctors who have earned the Doctor of Optometry degree after completing a four years of post-graduate professional training in optometry school. These doctors examine eyes for both vision and health problems, and also correct refractive errors by prescribing eyeglasses and contact lenses. They may also provide low vision care and vision therapy. They can also participate in pre and post operative care if you have had an eye surgery. However, they are not licensed to perform an eye surgery.

What are ophthalmologists?

Ophthalmologists are eye doctors who have earned the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree after completing four years of college, four years of medical school, one year of internship, and three years of hospital-based residency in ophthalmology. They are specialized in eye and vision care, and are trained to perform eye exams, diagnose and treat diseases, prescribe medications, and perform eye surgeries. They can also write prescriptions for eye glasses and contact lenses.

What are opticians?

While a layman refers to eye doctors as opticians, this is absolutely wrong. In fact, opticians are not eye doctors at all! Instead, they are those who use the prescriptions that you get from eye doctors and sell eye glasses and contact lenses to you. So, while not an eye doctor, but they also play an important role in your eye care team. And, this is why they are also required to undergo some form of professional training. They need to complete an opticianry training program and be licensed before they put up their store.

Which eye doctor should you visit?

Now that you know how the above three practitioners differ from one another, you wouldn’t mix them up. But, how would you know which doctor you need to approach? Which is the best eye care hospital you can approach?

  • For routine eye exams, you can approach both optometrists and ophthalmologists, as they can both help to detect and diagnose eye problems.
  • Once you have detected your eye problem, you will need an eye doctor who is highly trained and skilled in monitoring and treating your condition. If the treatment involves only medications, any one of the two will do. But, if any kind of surgery is involved, it is always right to approach and ophthalmologist.
  • In many cases, care for a specific eye problem may require both an optometrist and an ophthalmologist to work together. This arrangement is called co-management, wherein an optometrist refers you to an ophthalmologist for a definitive diagnosis and treatment plan. If surgery is required, the ophthalmologist will execute the treatment and then refer to back to the optometrist for post-operative care.

Arohi Eye Hospital is the best hospital you can walk into to have your eyes checked and treated by a professional eye specialist in Andheri West Mumbai. In fact, the hospital specializes in a variety of complicated eye problems like glaucoma, cataract surgery, refractive surgery, dry eye, floaters, diabetic retinopathy, paediatric ophthalmology, and all other kinds of retinal diseases.