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Eye and Vision Care

Optometrist Can`t Prescribe Glasses



Hi there i went to get my eye checked today, the optometrist couldn`t give a result. she said the my eye muscles are not relaxed. she told me to do an exercise for a month and then come back for a second exam. whats your opinion on it? the exercise is twice a day for 10 minutes. the exercise is two pieces of papers one with small letter held at reading distance and the other with big ones fixed at eye level as far as i can see it clear. basically i have to look at the letter on the distance chart until its clear and then look at the same letter on the near paper until its clear and back and forth. thanks.


Hello, and thanks for a great question.

The goal of all optometrists is to provide their patients with clear and comfortable vision. In order to have comfortable vision, the eye muscles, both inside and outside of the eye, must function properly.

One way to relax the focusing muscles inside the eye is to look at objects in the distance. Another way is to use special eye drops that dilate the pupil. A third way is to prescribe the proper glasses prescription after thorough testing is performed.

It sounds like your optometrist is not yet sure of the proper glasses prescription and does not want to sell you a pair of glasses that you may or may not need. So my recommendation is to complete the vision exercises and then return for another appointment in one month. At that time, the doctor can re-check your symptoms, visual acuity, and refraction to determine the best treatment plan for you.

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Response by:

Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO
Professor Emeritus of Clinical Optometry
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University