We occasionally find patients at our clinic are surprised that contact lens exams in Oshkosh, WI are not included with the general eye exam. This is because each exam makes specific determinations and has different purposes. If you are considering contact lenses as your next vision correction or have always wondered why you needed a separate exam, here are the reasons why you will attend additional appointments:
- Vision needs determined first: Your comprehensive eye exam determines your eye health. The exam can reveal degenerative conditions, diabetes, hypertension and other health issues. This is in addition to determining the extent of vision correction you require. If you request glasses, the doctor will also determine the best prescription at your general eye exam. However, the prescription for your glasses is not the same as the one you need for contact lenses.
- Additional tests: If you request contacts in addition or in lieu of glasses, there will be tests to determine if your eyes can handle them. There may be a tear production test, since dry eyes can make contacts very uncomfortable. The doctor also measures eye surface to see what size and type of contacts are best for you. All of this is to see if contacts are an appropriate choice for you physically and to determine your options.
- Separate prescriptions: As mentioned above, your glasses and contacts will not have matching prescriptions. The prescription will need to be adjusted, since there is a big difference between a lens touching your eye and one that is close to it on the outside of your face. Even if your general eye exam reveals a successful eyeglass prescription, you will still need the additional exam to see what you need for your contacts to work best for you.
- Discuss options: Contacts are offered in extended wear and disposable varieties. The additional appointment allows time to discuss your options in more detail. People who suffer from seasonal allergies frequently prefer disposable lenses, while those who wish to avoid the strict schedule associated with switching out disposables will prefer something more permanent. Your comfort depends on an informed decision.
- Test run: After your exam, you will have a trial pair of contacts to try out for a week. After the conclusion of that test run, the doctor will examine you again to see how you’ve adjusted to the prescription. If they work for you, the doctor’s office will order a supply to last until your next annual eye exam. However, if you did not find they helped you, the follow-up exam is a good opportunity to try something new.
- Learning more: If this is the first time you’ve used contacts, this is also an opportunity to learn how to put them in. Many people have initial misgivings about sticking their fingers in their eyes, but those can be swiftly overcome with practice. You will also learn about the care and cleaning of your contacts so they will remain comfortable and not become breeding grounds for eye infections.
To schedule your general eye appointments and contact lens exams in Oshkosh, call Dr. Jill’s Optical Shoppe today.