Tag Archives: Eye Medication

Optometrist, Ophthalmologist, Optician … What is the Difference?

Many people often ask – What is the difference between an Optometrist and an Ophthalmologist??

… OR …

What is the difference between and Optometrist and an Optician??

Well, HERE is the answer for you:

Optometrists are Doctors of Optometry.  They act as Primary Care Doctors for your eyes. They are experts in vision care, eye health and eye function. They prescribe glasses and contacts and can diagnose and treat eye diseases (like pink eye, glaucoma, eye allergies, eye ulcers, styes, eye inflammation etc.) with various forms of medication.  They are also trained to remove certain types of foreign bodies in the eye.  They usually have 4 years of college education, 4 years of Post-Graduate Doctorate work in Optometry School and some Optometrists elect to do a 1 year Post-Doctorate Residency.

Ophthalmologists are medical Doctors of Ophthalmology that deal primarily with the diseases of the eyes, which they are able to treat with medicine and surgery.  Most ophthalmologists act more as Seondary Care providers for your eyes – since most are eye surgeons.  They can also prescribe glasses and contacts – but, you’ll find that most ophthalmologists concentrate their practices primarily around eye surgery and treating various eye disease.  They usually have 4 years of college and 4 years of medical school and then they complete a Post-Doctorate 3 year Residency in Opthalmology to learn about the eye, eye disease and various ophthalmic surgical techniques.

Opticians are experts in optics, optical lenses and frames.  Opticians fill the prescriptions for eyeglasses and contact lenses that have been prescribed by Optometrist and Ophthalmogists.  They fit, sell, dispense and repair eyeglasses.  In some states they can also fit contact lenses.  Their education requires a high school diploma and 2 year Opticianary program (or a 3-5 year Opticianary apprenticeship).

Click on the above video from the American Optometric Association to learn more about the profession of  Optometry.