How to Find the Best Optometrists in San Rafael CA
Optometrists in Marin County CA are trained to perform eye exams and vision tests. Eye exams from optometrists help prevent, identify, and treat common vision problems, especially important if you're experiencing changes in your vision or are due for an eye exam.
The following research by The Prime Buyer's Report identifies the best optometrists in Marin County and issues related to choosing an eye doctor.
Updated November 04, 2016
How to Find the Best Optometrists in San Rafael CA
Optometrists in Marin County CA must be licensed by the California Board of Optometry. They are not required by law to have malpractice insurance; however, all optometrists bearing The Prime Buyer's Report—TOP 10 symbol have that malpractice insurance coverage for your protection, in addition to passing all other requirements for certification as Prime Buyer's Report—TOP 10 such as our survey phone calls to their previous patients to verify high satisfaction, verified license, time in business, clean complaint record, and more.
Optometrists in Marin County CA
Optometrists specialize in eye health including vision tests and eye exams. Commonly referred to as eye doctors, optometrists are licensed to diagnose and treat eye disease such as including cataracts and glaucoma. Optometrists also diagnose vision problems like lazy eye (amblyopia), farsightedness (being able to see clearly only from far away), nearsightedness, also called myopia, (being able to see clearly only from close up), and astigmatism. Treatment for these vision problems usually involves a prescription for corrective lenses.
Some eye doctors are pediatric optometrists, who perform eye exams for children and even diagnose vision problems in infants. Other optometrists may specialize in treating vision problems for elderly patients suffering from strained vision, eye fatigue, age-related eye problems and vision problems caused by diabetes.
When to Go To Optometrists in San Rafael CA
Most people should have regular eye examinations from an OD (Doctor of Optometry) every year. However, those with vision problems resulting from macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinopathy or eye disease should see an optometrist more often as recommended.
You should also make an appointment with an optometrist in Marin County CA if you experience any of the following:
• Any kind of eye injury
• Hazy or blurred vision
• Double vision
• Sudden or severe eye pain in or behind the eyes
• Sudden appearance of tears or excessive tearing
• Sensitivity to light
• Red or swollen eyes
• Itchy, burning eyes or heavy discharge from the eyes
• White areas in the pupil of the eye
• Seeing halos or rainbows around lights
• Seeing bright floating spots or floating strings
• Seeing flashes of light
Types of Eye Exams and Vision Tests Performed by Optometrists in Marin County CA
Optometrists in Marin County CA use a number of eye exams and vision tests to diagnose vision problems or the need for eyeglass perscriptions. The following are some of the more common eye exam techniques used by eye doctors in San Rafael CA.
Optometrists often start by taking a patient history to determine what vision problems you're experiencing. Good optometrists will ask you about eye problems you're having, including occupational and environmental conditions that can cause vision problems, and eye conditions or vision problems in your family history. As part of initial vision testing, optometrists may do preliminary vision tests including a depth perception test, color vision test, peripheral vision test, eye muscle movement test and how pupils respond to lights.
Optometrists check your peripheral vision using visual field tests. In this kind of vision testing, you will look into a light in the center of your field of vision while the optometrists shine a light in the periphery of your vision. Eye focus testing is a vision test similar to visual field testing that optometrists use to evaluate how well your eyes focus, move and work together. Eye focus testing is a painless vision test.
Most optometrists use an eye test called the cover test. Cover tests for eyes are performed while you focus on a distant object, covering one of your eyes at a time. This allows your eye doctor to test for strabismus (eye turn), lazy eye (amblyopia) or poor depth perception.
Color vision testing enables optometrists to test for color blindness. Being color blind doesn't mean seeing only in gray, but that there are specific colors not as recognizable by you as by others. Most color vision tests involve patients looking at numbers formed by dots against a background of dots of a different color (known as Ishihara plates). Individuals who are not color blind will clearly see the correct number, while those who are color blind or have color vision problems will see a different number or no number at all.
Dilation testing is one method optometrists in San Rafael use to look into your eye. In order to perform these eye tests, optometrists dilate your pupils using dilating drops. You may want to take sunglasses to your eye test if your optometrist plans to use the dilation test, as your eyes will be more sensitive to light for a few hours after your vision test.
Visual Acuity Tests. Optometrists in Marin County perform visual acuity measurements to check how well each of your eyes is seeing. Visual acuity tests may include reading letters at distance and near reading charts.
Optometrists use a form of eye testing called tonometry to measure eye pressure. In this painless eye test, optometrists direct a puff of air at your eye and then measure intraocular eye pressure based on how your eye resists the air. Another eye exam similar to tonometry is called the slit lamp test. In this eye test, optometrists numb your eye with eye drops and then touch the front of each eye as you stare into the slit lamp. This allows eye doctors to examine the internal structure of your eyes.
Some Optometrists in Marin County Are Better Than Others
The Prime Buyer's Report lists these optometrists in Marin County CA: Optica Optometry San Rafael CA, Lenscrafters San Rafael San Rafael CA, Marin Optometric Group Inc San Rafael CA, Mt. Tam Vision Center San Anselmo CA, Marin Eye Care Novato CA, Larkspur Landing Optometry Larkspur CA, Sausalito Optometry Sausalito CA, Marin Optometry - Mill Valley Mill Valley CA. Other optometrists in San Rafael CA that might still be in business include: .
Questions To Ask Optometrists in San Rafael CA
Step 1: Describe Your Vision Problems to the Marin County Optometrists.
Before your visit to the eye doctor, write down the specific concerns you want the optometrist to address or any questions you have. Be sure to note the frequency and severity of the vision problems.
Step 2: Ask Good Optometrists in Marin County CA the Following Questions
There are many good eye doctors in San Rafael CA, but not all optometrists are qualified to treat every problem. So it's important to know which optometrists in Marin County are experienced in diagnosing or treating the vision problems you're experiencing. You're likely to find the best doctor of optometry for you by choosing the one who answers your questions to your satisfaction. The following questions will get you started:
• What education do the optometrists have?
• How long have the optometrists been practicing in Marin County CA?
• Have the optometrists dealt with patients who have similar vision problems?
• Do the Marin County eye doctors specialize in treating certain eye diseases or vision problems?
• What eyecare services are offered by the optometrists?
• Do the eye optometrists specialize in treatments for your particular eye condition or vision problems?
• Will the vision tests performed by the optometrists effect your ability to drive home safely, such as eye exams that dilate the pupils?
• Are the optometrists near public transit? This might be important if vision problems prevent you from driving.
Glossary of Terms Used By Optometrists in Marin County CA
Astigmatism - During comprehensive optometry examinations, optometrists check for astigmatism. Astigmatism is a common vision problem that causes blurred vision due to irregular shape of the cornea or curvature of the eye lens.
Blepharitis - Inflammation of the eyelids and eyelashes. Blepharitis causes red, irritated, itchy eyelids and dandruff-like scales on eyelashes. Optometrists in Marin County CA can test you for blepharitis and advise on treatment options.
Color Blindness / Color Vision Deficiency - Color blindness is the inability to distinguish between some colors or the inability to see color. Color blindness usually affects the ability to easily distinguish red and green from other colors. Color vision deficiency is often hereditary and more commonly affects men. Optometrists can easily perform vision tests for color blindness.
Computer Vision Syndrome - Eye and vision problems resulting from prolonged computer use are called Computer Vision Syndrome. Optometrists diagnose Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) using visual acuity measurements, refraction vision tests and eye tests that show how well the eyes work together.
Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye) - Pink eye is inflammation or infection of the conjunctiva, the transparent layer lining the inner eyelid. Pink eye is characterized by eye discharge, redness, swelling and a gritty feeling. Conjunctivitis may be viral, bacterial or allergic and can be contagious. Optometrists diagnose conjunctivitis through comprehensive eye exams, including vision tests, evaluation of the eye tissue and eye cultures.
Crossed Eyes (Esotropia / Strabismus) - A vision condition in which both eyes do not look at the same place at the same time, crossed eyes or strabismus is when one eye looks inward toward the nose and the other eye looks outward. Optometrists diagnose strabismus with vision tests and eye focus testing. Common treatments for strabismus include vision therapy to improve eye alignment and eye coordination.
Diabetic Retinopathy - Occurring in people with diabetes, diabetic retinopathy causes damage to the retina. Early stages of diabetic retinopathy are called background retinopathy, late stages are referred to as proliferative retinopathy. Diabetic retinopathy is diagnosed by optometrists using comprehensive eye tests.
Floaters - Spots or shadowy images seen moving in the field of vision are often referred to as floaters. They are caused by particles in eye fluid. Floaters occur naturally with aging or as a result of eye damage. Most spots and floaters are not harmful, but only an optometrist can rule out eye problems through comprehensive eye exams and vision tests.
Lazy Eye (Amblyopia) - Loss or lack of clear vision in one eye is called Amblyopia, or Lazy eye. Lazy eye is not correctable with lenses, and is not due to eye health or vision problems. It may be treated in children by pediatric optometrists, and early diagnosis increases the chance for complete recovery. The American Optometric Association recommends that all children have a comprehensive eye examination by 6 months of age and another eye test at age 3.
Nystagmus - An eye problem that causes involuntary, repetitive movements of the eye, in up-and-down or side-to-side motions or circular patterns that can result in reduced vision. Nystagmus may result in reduced vision and can cause problems with depth perception. Nystagmus is often the result of underlying health issues, so optometrists can diagnose nystagmus through eye exams with a special emphasis on how the eyes move.
Optometrist - Doctors of Optometry (OD) who specialize in vision problems, treating vision conditions, and prescribing medications for eye diseases. Optometrists are the main providers of vision care. They examine patients' eyes and diagnose vision problems, test for depth perception and color perception. Optometrists in Marin County also suggest preventative measures for better vision and prescribe treatments for vision problems and eye diseases.