Online Eye Exams are not all that they seem to be

Submitted by Melissa Gold on March 2, 2020

You can do just about anything online from buying new clothes or earning a degree. But what about your regular eye exams? Is an online test sufficient enough for that? Put simply, the answer is no!

Several online services offer the opportunity to take an eye test from the comfort of your own home. Using a series of lines, shapes and letters, they claim to provide an assessment of your vision in as little as 30 minutes. Many of these services even offer to have your test results verified by an optometrist who can then issue an eyeglass prescription.

Although online vision tests may seem convenient, they only measure visual acuity and refractive error. Some branch out and test for other vision problems such as color blindness and light sensitivity. However, none have the ability to focus on what’s most important—your eye health. A comprehensive eye exam from your ophthalmologist is the only way to identify signs for serious vision problems such as cataracts, glaucoma, and macular degeneration.

A thorough routine vision exam is important.  Conducting a vision test without the aid of a qualified ophthalmologist poses certain risks. If vision problems such as cataracts, macular degeneration, and glaucoma exist, they will remain undetected. Other overall health conditions can even present symptoms in the eyes. In fact, blurred vision is often one of the first warning signs of diabetes. If you are experiencing drastic changes in your vision, make an appointment with your eye doctor.

Even though some online services have their vision test results verified by an optometrist, without an eye care professional present while you take the online test, it’s difficult to ensure that the test is administered properly in the first place. Inaccurate test results may lead to receiving an incorrect prescription.

Online tests aren’t usually covered by vision insurance. If you do have insurance, your co-pay is likely less expensive than the fees associated with online vision services.

We value our patients’ time and understand why the convenience of online vision tests may be alluring—but we also value your health! We want to ensure that you’re not only seeing clearly, but that you’re on the path to whole-body health as well. If you have any questions about the benefits of an in-office exam please call our office in Birmingham, MI, 248-646-3733.

Your health is our priority. We love our patients!