Eye exams can be as important as a physical in determining your health.
Doctors of Optometry (O.D.s/ optometrists) are the independent primary health care professionals for the eye, with a pre-professional undergraduate degree and four years of professional education at a college of optometry. Some optometrists complete an optional residency in a specific area of practice. Optometrists examine, diagnose, treat, and manage diseases, injuries, and disorders of the visual system, the eye, and associated structures as well as identify related systemic conditions affecting the eye. Optometrists prescribe medications, perform low vision rehabilitation and vision therapy, and prescribe spectacle lenses and contact lenses.
Doctors of Ophthalmology (M.D.s/ ophthalmologists) are specialists with a college medical degree and four years of additional training and residency. They are licensed to practice surgery, treat eye diseases, prescribe medicine, and perform basic vision center services such as eye exams, and prescribing spectacle lenses and contact lenses.
Optician – Opticians are eye care technicians who are trained to make, verify and fit eyeglass lenses and frames. They ensure the eyeglasses are suitable for the patient, provide adjustment to the frames, and fabricate the eyewear. Opticians are not licensed to diagnose or treat eye diseases.