what happens in an eye exam?

After filling out insurance information and our basic health questionnaire, the optometrist will bring you back to a pre-testing room where preliminary tests include an estimate of your vision correction and a peripheral vision screening test. After that, she will bring you to an examination room where you will be seated in an exam chair facing the reflection of an eye chart. You will be asked to read the smallest line of letters you are able to see (if you have contact lenses or glasses, your distance vision will be checked with those lenses or glasses). The doctor will then do a series of screening tests including eye movements and pupillary reactions. The next test is the most familiar to patients - you will be asked to look through a machine that resembles a large pair of metal binoculars and given choices to see which lens power improves your vision - this is called a refraction. The remainder of the eye exam will evaluate your eye health including an eye pressure check and possibly a dilated eye exam. During the eye exam, you will have an opportunity to select eyewear and/or discuss possible contact lens vision correction options. On your first eye exam at our clinic, we suggest that you allot about an hour of your time.

what is a dilation?

In dim lighting, most peoples' pupils are no larger than 5 or 6 millimeters. Because of this, the view into the back of the eye may be restricted. By instilling eye drops that dilate a person's pupils (the medicine relaxes the muscle that constricts the pupil), a much more comprehensive evaluation of the health inside the eye can be performed. The effects of the eye drops include light sensitivity and blurring of a person's reading vision. We recommend regular dilated eye exams for healthy adults and yearly dilated eye exams for adults over 60, those with existing eye conditions and diabetics.

can I drive home after a dilation?

For your comfort and convenience, we will provide you temporary sunglass shades to ease your light sensitivity and you should find that your distance vision is minimally affected by the dilation . Although the eye exam will not last more than an hour, the effects of the dilation drops can last 3-4 hours so we suggest scheduling your eye exam near the end of your work day or on a day that you are not needing to read alot of print for 3-4 hours. If you have had difficulty driving after having your eyes dilated in the past, it may be helpful to arrange a ride home.

5101 25th Avenue NE, Suite 10 | Seattle, Washington | 98105 | 206-432-9051