BBB offers tips for choosing an eye doctor


By John North

Better Business Bureau

It’s important to regularly get your eyes examined because it can help prevent disease and catch problems early. According to the Center for Disease Control, an estimated 11 million Americans ages 12 and older could see better if they used corrective lenses and treatments.

According to IBIS World, as of 2023, there are over 32,000 optometrist businesses in the US. Choosing a trustworthy healthcare professional can be a challenging and overwhelming process, but shouldn’t keep you from getting the care you need.

There are two types of eye doctors. Optometrists are trained to examine, diagnose, treat and manage some diseases and disorders. They don’t perform eye surgery, but can prescribe eyeglasses and contacts. Ophthalmologists specialize in medical and surgical eye care. Also, they specialize in the prevention of eye disease and injury, as well as treating eye health problems, such as dry eye syndrome, eyelid conditions, such as blepharitis and styes, cataracts, diabetic eye disease, glaucoma or macular degeneration.

Better Business Bureau offers tips to help you choose an eye doctor:

* Determine your needs. Your level of care determines the type of eye doctor you want to see. If you have a preexisting eye condition or are having unusual symptoms, you may need to see a specialist.

* Ask for recommendations from family and friends. Hearing personal stories and experiences from people you trust may help in your decision. You can also get referrals from your primary care physician.

* Check credentials. Choosing a licensed eye doctor helps ensure that you receive the best care possible. Licensed doctors carry appropriate insurance and meet local and state requirements.

* Find out if they are members of an association like the American Optometric Association. These associations help ensure your provider knows the latest trends in eye care and equipment.

* Choose an eye care professional convenient for you to visit so you don’t miss appointments. Choose one near your home or workplace that offers hours to suit your schedule and is easily reached in emergencies.

* Determine if the visit and exam was thorough. If you feel the doctor was rushed or rushed you through the visit, maybe you need to find another one.

* Make sure you feel comfortable with the doctor. If you don’t like him or her, you’ll be less likely to schedule your next checkup.

* Ask questions. Don’t be afraid to inquire about something you don’t understand.

* Research multiple providers and compare. Consider if they accept your insurance, their years of service and cost. You may also consider the services they provide and the technology they use.

* Seek reviews and ratings of the service. Look for positive and negative reviews to give you an accurate idea of what to expect.

Healthy vision starts at getting regularly scheduled eye exams, but it does not end there. You can help protect your eyes by eating healthy, wearing protective eyewear when working outside and wearing sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation.

For more information on choosing an eye doctor, visit or call (937) 222-5825. BBB can provide a list of BBB Accredited Businesses in the industry and business profiles on ones you may be considering.

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