Types of Eye Examination You Need to Know

It is important to have regular eye examinations to ensure that the condition of your eyes and the function of your sense of sight remain healthy and awake. While undergoing it, there are several tests and eye examinations that will be carried out by an ophthalmologist.

Eyes are organs that function to see. The sense of sight is one part of the five senses that allows us to recognize things around us and see the world.

Because of its important role, the eyes need to be kept in good health so that they can continue to function as they should.

To maintain eye health, there are many ways you can do, for example:

  • Eat nutritious food.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Do not smoke.
  • Wear sunglasses when working in the hot sun.
  • Wear eye protection when doing certain jobs.
  • Limit the time to stare at the screen of a laptop, computer, or cellphone. If you work with these electronic devices, try taking a break every 20 minutes and turning your gaze to an object that is far away.

In addition to the several ways above, efforts to maintain eye health also need to be carried out by undergoing regular eye examinations.

Health Workers Who Play a Role in Eye Examination

Eye examination serves to monitor eye health conditions so that eye diseases and impaired vision function can be detected as early as possible. Thus, treatment steps can be taken immediately if there are eye problems.

Eye examinations can be carried out by an ophthalmologist, assisted by other health workers, namely:

  • Optometrist

    With this examination, an optometrist can determine whether the patient has refractive errors of the eye, such as nearsightedness, farsightedness, or cylinder eyes.

  • Optometrist (Optimist)

    The optometrist is in charge of making glasses or preparing contact lenses based on a prescription from an ophthalmologist. In addition to making glasses, optisien can also perform an examination to determine whether the glasses that are being used by the patient are still suitable for use or need to be replaced.

Different Types of Eye Examination

When you undergo an eye examination, the doctor will perform a series of examinations and supporting tests to evaluate the performance of all parts of the eye and their functions.

The following are some of the common types of eye exams:

1. Physical examination of the eye

Before performing a physical examination of the eye, the doctor will first ask if the patient has any eye or vision complaints.

After asking the patient's history of complaints and health, the doctor will perform a physical examination of the eyes using a special lamp called slit lamp. Through this tool, the ophthalmologist can assess the condition of the inside of the eyelids, cornea, sclera (white part of the eye), eye lens, pupil, iris, and fluid in the eyeball.

To examine the deeper parts of the eye, such as blood vessels, nerves, and retina, the doctor will perform an examination using an instrument called an ophthalmoscope.

2. Examination of eye muscle movement

This test aims to assess the strength of the eye muscles in moving the eyeball. In this examination, the doctor will ask the patient to close and open the eyelids and then follow the movement of the doctor's finger or other object.

3 Visual acuity test (refractive test)

This procedure aims to determine how clear the patient's vision is when he sees an object at a certain distance. Visual acuity tests are generally carried out using the Snellen card, which is a special card consisting of letters and numbers of varying sizes.

When undergoing this test, the patient will first be asked to remove his glasses or contact lenses and then the examiner will allow the patient to sit in a room with good lighting. After that, the examiner will ask the patient to read the letters or numbers on the Snellen card which is placed about 6 meters in front of the patient's seat.

If there is a refractive error in the eye, the examiner will then use a spectacle-like instrument called a phoropter to determine the thickness of eyeglass lenses that are suitable for use by the patient.

After the vision is corrected with the device, the doctor will prescribe glasses or contact lenses according to the size of the lens that is suitable for the patient.

4. Visual field check

The purpose of this examination is to assess the ability of the patient's eyes to see objects around them when the eyes are focused on one point.

In this examination, the patient will first be asked to sit down and cover one eye with his hand, then the doctor will direct the patient to focus on a point in front of the open eye. The patient will be asked not to move his eyes or head during the examination.

After that, the doctor will move his finger or a certain object from various sides and the patient will be asked to say "yes" when the object or the doctor's finger begins to appear. This examination will then be performed on the other eye.

5. Color blind test

Color blindness test is an examination carried out to detect whether the patient has color blindness or difficulty in identifying certain colors.

This eye examination is most commonly performed with the Ishihara test. In this color blind examination method, the patient will be asked to name a certain number or pattern that appears on a special colored card.

If the patient's vision is normal, then he can see the numbers listed on the card. However, if the patient is color blind, then the number will be illegible or appear like any other number.

6. Tonometry

Tonometry is a test performed to measure the pressure inside the eyeball or intraocular pressure (IOP). This test is done to check for diseases that can increase eye pressure, such as glaucoma.

There are two methods of tonometry examination that are commonly carried out, namely:

  • Applanation tonometry

    During this examination, the doctor will give eye drops that contain a local anesthetic in both the patient's eyes and a special dye in the eye. After a few minutes, when the effect of the local anesthetic has started, the patient will be asked to sit in the front slit lamp with open eyes.

    After that, the doctor will place a special instrument on both surfaces of the patient's eyeball to assess the pressure inside the ball. Because it has been dropped with local anesthetic, this examination is painless.

  • Non-contact tonometry

    Non-contact tonometry uses air that is blown into the eye. In this examination, there is no instrument attached to the eyeball, so there is no pain.

Some of these eye exams will be done while you are doing check-up eye health. Remember, even if you have no complaints about vision or eye problems, it is still necessary to consult an ophthalmologist for an eye examination at least every 2 years.