Optometrist Job Description
An optometrist is a person who provides eye and vision care by performing eye examination to diagnose vision problems, and prescribing and supplying corrective lenses to correct the problems. Optometrists perform eye examination with specialist equipment to determine ocular health, visual acuity, depth and color perception, and the ability to coordinate and focus the eyes.
An optometrist should be patient, careful, methodical and helpful, and have the ability to put nervous and distressed patients at ease. They should have scientific aptitude and practical skills to understand and apply scientific principles and methods in examining the eye and operating complex equipment. Optometrists who work in private practices should have business and accounting skills.
Pursue a career in optometry if you are good at biology, chemistry, physics and math, and interested in the workings of the human eye and vision system.
What does a Optometrist do?
Optometrists may do some or all of the following:
- examine eyes to diagnose eye and vision problems
- prescribe treatments for eye diseases such as allergies, cataracts and glaucoma
- prescribe and fit contact lenses and glasses to correct vision problems
- diagnose the effects of conditions such as diabetes and hypertension and refer patients to specialist doctors
- give advice on eye care and lifestyle, and recommend eye exercises and eye-healthy nutrition
- keep abreast with the scientific and technological developments in the field
- run and manage their own businesses
Where does a Optometrist work?
Optometrists usually work normal office hours, but may sometimes work evenings and weekends. They work in offices, clinics and hospitals. Many optometrists work in private practices.
What is Required to Become a Optometrist ?
To become an optometrist, you need to have a degree in optometry. Optometrists need licensing to practice in most parts of the world.
An optometrist is not a medical doctor, but just a healthcare professional. The medical doctor who specializes in eye and vision care is called an ophthalmologist.
Just to give you an idea, some of the classes that you’ll be taking in college may include:
- Optics and visual science
- Medical laboratory procedures
- Diagnoses and treatment of vision problems and eye diseases
Knowledge, Skills and Attributes
Optometrists need to have:
- manual dexterity
- scientific aptitude
- confidence and assertiveness
- good eyesight
- good memory
- good eyesight and near vision
- good attention to detail
- good hand-eye coordination
- good listening and communication skills
- good judgment and decision making skills
- organizational skills
- analytical and problem-solving skills
- math and computer skills
- observational skills
- the ability to work calmly under pressure
- the ability to work well independently and in a team
- the ability to work in close proximity to patients
- the ability to maintain focus during delicate procedures
- the ability to inspire confidence in others in critical situations
- knowledge of how the human eye works
- knowledge of eye problems and diseases
- knowledge of contact lenses and types of eyeglasses frames
- knowledge of business management
Should I be a Optometrist ?
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