Choosing the Right Eyecare Professionals

Did you know half of your brain power is devoted to processing visual information? Taking care of your eyes is part of your overall health and choosing the proper eyecare team is essential to leading a healthy life. Undiagnosed eye diseases can lead to complications with sight and other irreversible conditions. It is important to find the right doctor to suit your needs so you can see clearly into the future. We have broken down a few areas to consider when choosing an optometrist.

What is an Optometrist?

First of all, what is an optometrist? There are two kinds of doctors who can help you with your eyecare in Canada.  They are optometrists and ophthalmologists. An optometrist has a Doctor of Optometry degree.  That degree typically involves eight or more years of post secondary education. They are the ones that will conduct your eye exams, detect early signs of eye diseases, and other health conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Optometrists will also be the ones you see for regular check-ups and write prescriptions for glasses or contacts.

In Canada ophthalmologists are medical doctors who limit their practice to complex eye diseases and eye surgery.  You may be referred to an ophthalmologist by your primary care physician or your optometrist if the need arises.

Services and specialties 

An important aspect to consider when selecting an optometrist are the services your doctor offers. If you already have a medical eye problem such as age-related macular degeneration, cataracts, or glaucoma it’s important that you consider an optometrist who has experience in treating and monitoring your condition.  A comprehensive eye exam should be part of your overall health plan.  This exam should include a thorough assessment of your visual health, screening for eye disease and/or updating your eyeglass or contact lens prescriptions. You can access more information about routine eye exams here:

You should also consider your mobility and that you might need a family member or friend to help you get to and from your appointment. You are more likely to keep your appointment if you have easy access to the doctor’s location.

Your eyeglass prescription is only one piece of information to get your vision on track. Choosing new frames for glasses and the proper lenses is an important task and shouldn’t be taken lightly. After all, you will likely be wearing them for years to come and you want them to look good and be comfortable.

Staff members should be able to guide you through choosing your new frames taking into consideration your lifestyle, occupation, face shape and personal style. In addition, they can help you choose prescription and non-prescription sunglasses that are right for you.