July 10, 2013

Behavioural optometry

When I was looking for an optometrist a few months ago, I wasn’t specifically looking for a behavioural optometrist. In fact, I didn’t even know there was such a things as behavioural optometry. I found Smart Vision Optometry through Google search. Their web site didn’t quite convince me to visit them, but somehow I decided to go check them out. In hindsight, that was a good decision.

This is what I have understood from my treatment so far. Eyesight and vision are two related but different things. Eyesight is the ability of your eyes to see things. Vision is your ability to make use of visual information to make decisions. For example, seeing the other side of the road and an approaching car is eyesight. Gauging the width of the road, distance of the approaching car, and the car’s speed to determine if it’s safe to cross the road is vision. Having a good eyesight is necessary, but not sufficient, to having a good vision.

A conventional optometrist is solely focused on improving your eyesight, while a behavioural optometrist tries to improve both your eyesight and vision.

My doctor (Gary Rodney) recommended that I try orthokeratology instead of wearing glasses. I don’t wear glasses during the day anymore; I wear contacts at night while sleeping. I am also taking vision training exercises every day to improve my vision. In addition to helping me see better, the vision training is supposed to keep my myopia from worsening. It’s definitely more work than just getting a new pair of glasses, but the payoff makes the effort well worth it.

When your next optometrist visit is due, try to find a behavioural optometrist. Maybe then you won’t have to keep changing your glasses every few years.