Your RA Optometrist can treat you for a wide range of vision problems and conditions. These include:
- Common minor eye disorders, such as long and shortsightedness, as well as less-common problems such as the various eye diseases.
- They provide specialist help in areas such as children’s vision, helping to resolve vision development problems at an early age.
This section of the website offers more detailed information on a range of visual conditions and explains how your optometrist would go about treating you for these conditions.
Minor eye disorders
- Minor eye disorders are very common.
- Over half the Australian population uses some form of vision correction, and nearly everyone will require some vision correction at some time during their life.
- The most common eye problems are refractive errors such as shortsightedness or longsightedness.
- For perfectly clear vision, the image of a viewed object needs to be focused onto the retina, just as a camera has to be focused properly in order to take a clear picture. If the image is not focused exactly on the retina, then the image will be blurred, just like an out-of-focus photograph. In this case, the person is said to have a refractive error.
- Refractive errors occur when there is a mismatch between the length of the eye and its optical power.
- The exact causes of refractive errors are still being studied, but it is known that both hereditary and environmental influences can affect their development.
- Most people have some refractive error, but in most cases the error is small, and does not cause any problems. In fact, the average person is slightly longsighted.
- Refractive errors can usually be corrected using glasses or contact lenses. There are also surgical techniques that can be used to correct refractive errors.
Eye diseases are relatively rare, although they become more common as we get older. Some of the more common eye diseases include ARM (age-related macular degeneration), glaucoma, cataracts, pterygium and diabetes.
- All eye diseases should be regarded as serious – even diseases that appear to be mild can have the potential to cause serious damage if they are not treated appropriately.
- If you suspect that you have any eye disease, you should seek immediate care from a qualified professional.
- Many serious eye diseases do not have any dramatic symptoms. Indeed, some people with serious eye diseases do not even realise that there is anything wrong until their eyes have suffered irreversible damage.
- Everyone should have a checkup from an optometrist or ophthalmologist every two years, in order to detect any eye disease before it has a chance to cause serious damage.
- Your optometrist may recommend more frequent checks if you are at higher risk of eye disease.
Please click through the links on the left to learn more about the different aspects of optometry, including specific eye diseases and vision problems.