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Northern Montana Health Care

Optometry Providers:

Signs You Should Visit Your Optometrist

If you are a generally healthy person (age 18 to 60), you’ll need to visit the eye doctor once every two years. Once you reach 61, doctors recommend that you visit your Optometrist annually. Some adults have “at-risk” health factors, like a family history of eye disease, diabetes, or high blood pressure, which means they should have more frequent eye exams. If you do have some of these “at-risk” factors, be sure to consult with your Optometrist to determine a regular eye exam schedule.

If you are experiencing any of the following eye-related problems, you may need to visit your Optometrist ASAP.

  • Frequent headaches
  • Farsightedness (blurred vision)
  • Nearsightedness (struggle to see things up close)
  • Double vision
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Constantly squinting
  • You see halos when you are around light

What is Optometry?

Optometry is concerned with the eyes and related structures, as well as vision, visual systems, and vision information processing in humans. Optometrists are trained to prescribe and fit lenses to improve vision, and  to diagnose and treat various eye diseases.

What is the Difference Between Optometry and Ophthalmology?

Optometrists are eye care professionals who provide primary vision care ranging from sight testing and correction to the diagnosis, treatment, and management of vision changes. Optometrists are not a medical doctor. They receive a Doctor of Optometry (OD) degree after completing four years of Optometry School, preceded by at least three years of college. They are licensed to practice optometry which primarily involves performing eye exams and vision tests, prescribing and dispensing corrective lenses, detecting certain eye abnormalities, and prescribing medications for certain eye diseases.

An Ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who specializes in eye and vision care. Ophthalmologists differ from Optometrists in their levels of training and in what they can diagnose and treat. As a medical doctor who has completed college and at least eight years of additional medical training, an Ophthalmologist is licensed to practice medicine and surgery. An Ophthalmologist diagnoses and treats all eye diseases, performs eye surgery, and prescribes and fits eyeglasses and contact lenses to correct vision problems.


Call (406) 265-7831 to schedule an appointment.

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