Why Do You Need a Contact Lens Exam?

Do you know there is a difference between contact lens exams and comprehensive eye exams? Everyone, including children, needs a comprehensive eye exam at least twice a year. During this visit, your doctor performs some tests to evaluate your fluid pressure, prescription strength for people who wear eyeglasses, eye coordination, and visual acuity. 

Contact lens exams, on the other hand, involve more complex tests. Unlike eyeglasses, which people wear a few millimeters away from their eyes, you must place contacts directly over your eyes. This means that optometrists must measure the curvature and diameter of the cornea to make sure the lenses fit both eyes properly.

Even if you get regular eye exams, you still need a separate exam for contact lenses.


Why You Need a Separate Contact Lens Exam

If you wear eyeglasses but plan to switch to contacts, you need to schedule a separate contact lens exam. During a contact lens exam, your doctor ensures that your lenses are healthy, fit, and perform their function properly. 

The good news is that the doctor can perform a comprehensive eye exam and contact lens exam at the same time to save time.


What Happens During a Contact Eye Exam?

Professional eye doctors conduct contact lens exams. The first step is to schedule a contact lens consultation. Your doctor will discuss some health and lifestyle considerations that will help them determine the best type of contacts that will suit you. This is a good time to tell your doctor if you would like some colored eye contact lenses. 

Next, the optometrist will perform a few tests to check your vision with the contacts. He checks for any health issues in your eyes that could cause discomfort when wearing contacts. He will perform special tests, including measuring your eyes for a contact fitting.

  • Pupil and iris measurements - The optometrists use a slit lamp or biomicroscope to measure the size of your iris or pupil. These measurements help them order contacts that will fit perfectly on your eyes.
  • Tear film evaluation - This test helps determine if your eyes have enough moisture to keep the lenses adequately hydrated. If you have any signs of dry eye syndrome, your doctor will have to prescribe special contact lenses to ensure your eyes have proper protection from abrasion. 
  • Cornea measurements - Contact lenses do not come in a one-size-fits-all. Your optometrists must measure your cornea curve to get the right size of lenses that will fit perfectly. 


Contact Lenses Prescription

After performing the required tests, your doctor will have you fit different lenses to confirm the fit before placing an order for your customized lenses. You do not get your contact lenses on the same day. So, optometrists will provide temporary contact lenses that you can use before your order is ready. 

Before leaving the office, your doctor will give hygiene and care instructions that you must adhere to to ensure eye safety. You may have to schedule a follow-up visit where optometrists will check if your lenses are adjusting and functioning well.

To know why you need a contact lens exam, visit Grove Eye Care at our office in Richmond or Midlothian, Virginia. You can call (804) 353-3937 or (804) 888-8998 to schedule an appointment today.

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(804) 353-3937
(804) 888-8998
8048888998 8048888999 14431 Suite B Sommerville Court
Midlothian, VA 23113