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Optometry - A visionary career

While we discuss careers; doctors, engineers, architects, and other common options are emphasized. Whereas, there are certainly other interesting and infamous fields that you can study, especially in the field of science. In this article, we are going to talk about one such visionary career - Optometry.

One might think - Is Optometry a good career? - It’s a study related to eye care. The professionals belonging to optometry are responsible to conduct eye tests and inspect vision. - (alongwith treating patients by conducting surgery or prescribing appropriate medication). Just imagine having the boon and the medical expertise of fixing people’s vision; that too, on a daily basis. You give them a reason to experience life in its colorful glory. You can go home every day with a contentment-filled heart and the drive to rush back to your office the next day.

A sustainable future like this depends on the decisions you make today. Therefore, while exploring your career options, ensure you have maximum information about the field. Understand what the study will be like and the open opportunities that it will serve. In this article, we will shed light on the different aspects and possibilities of ‘Optometry as a career’.

What is the study of Optometry?

Optometry comes from the Greek words ‘opsis’ which means ‘view’ and ‘metron’ means ‘something used to measure’.

Just like other science fields, this visionary branch also requires dedicated practice hours and intensive study. Professionals in this field are responsible to provide complete eye care solutions to their patients. The job also involves professional consulting/counseling patients about their eye care queries. Furthermore, you also learn the skill of creating spectacles with the right lenses and operating with other optical aids.

You get various advantages in terms of work-life balance, career choice, and opportunities. This dynamic and challenging career offers self-awareness and community respect as well.

An interested candidate wanting to explore this side of the health care sector needs to dedicate 4 years of study. You can get your Bachelor of Optometry done from ITM University, Raipur. ITM Vocational University, Vadodara also offers the same course, so you can select the university according to your geographical convenience. Both these universities offer 4 years of cohesive learning that involves 3 years of specialty course and 1 year of clinical training.

During your training, we also help you polish your communication skills and business management skills. Our curriculum is drafted and inculcated by the best pedagogy to make you industry-ready for fetching versatile opportunities.

Below-discussed are some of the common concerns revolving around the field, so we thought of addressing them. Please read till the end to get the entire information before enrolling yourself.

Is optometry a medical course?

Optometrists are primary health care professionals dealing with eyes and vision care. They are the primary practitioners responsible for refraction, management of eye conditions, assisting in detecting eye conditions, making spectacles, and providing lenses. This is not a medical degree but is related to the medical field. Eyes are an essential part of the body and hence, the concerned study helps to perform surgery or provide eye corrective measures.

Job Responsibilities of an Optometrist

Detecting, diagnosing, managing disorders by prescribing remedies to treat eye disorders.

Conducting tests and examining patients’ eyes to assess ocular health and understand issues related to vision and abnormalities.

Using specialized instruments and equipment to measure visual acuity, visual pathways, freedom of vision, visual fields, and eye movements.

Advising on visual health matters including contact lens care, optics, vision care for the elderly, and industrial eye safety.

If any additional treatment is required, refer patients to the health professional of the related genre.

Detecting and diagnosing the eye movement disorder, planning and managing treatment programs, counseling patients in the eye exercise to coordinate movement, and focusing on the eyes.

4.Education qualification needed to become an optometrist

The minimum marks required are 45%

The candidate should have cleared 10+2 grades with chemistry,physics, and biology subjects.

There are several renowned institutions such as ITM offering optometry course in Vadodara and Raipur campuses. The students opting for such courses get to explore real-time skills. If you’re looking to gather information concerning the entrance exams, check the official website for details.

5. Where does an optometrist work?

They can work with doctors or in an optical store or be self-employed. Usually, the candidates having a degree, prefer being self-employed. If you’re a specialized person, there are chances to fly abroad and work abroad.

6. Job opportunities

Private hospital

If you are looking for a fast-paced and busy environment, choosing hospitals is the best option for practice. Treating patients on an urgent basis will be a part of your daily routine. While practicing at private hospitals, you’re required to work with the ophthalmologists' team. You can also get an opportunity to operate on patients with cataracts or macular degeneration.

Domiciliary Visits

Domiciliary optometrists visit people who are unable to visit the clinics or examination room for treatment.

The health care assistant needs to visit day-care centers, homes, care homes, NGO establishments, and community centers. At times, the physical and mentally disabled people or arthritis patients approach you and they must be handled well. Hence, one needs to develop flexibility while examining the patients and develop the techniques.

Community optometrists

The majority of optometrists are involved either in clinical projects or start working independently. Whereas, corporate and independent optometry is different.

Independent practice

If you’re working alone or are conducting the business independently, you’re the boss. Also, while you conduct a business, you end up spending time with a patient personally and building your loyalty with them. An independent practice needs a certain amount of money to buy your own equipment and all the necessary setup required for diagnosis. So, keep this in mind before starting on your own.

Corporate Practice

Corporate optometrists need to work in large health care facilities. It is practiced by working with a large team and the chances of relocating are more. You need to follow certain shift timings, rules, and regulations of the organization you’ll be working for.

Vision researchers

There are people who are curious to gather knowledge, dig in deeper, and they opt for the vision researcher option. To work as a vision researcher, one needs to acquire a Ph.D. Degree and this is an added 3 to 4 years of study. The professionals improve protocols, clinical procedures, and functional therapies. Also, attending and presenting their research at a national level is part of the profession. Vision researchers help the field with newly discovered information, allowing them to execute these findings for the betterment of patients.

7. Confusion between three types of eye doctors -

When it comes to eyes, there are three different types of eye care providers and this completely relies on the expertise and the levels of training. Here is a quick insight into three different types of eye care professionals -

i. Optometrists

Optometrists are professionals providing basic vision care facilities. They’re responsible for sight testing, conducting a correct diagnosis, treatment, and managing vision changes. They’re not a medical doctor, but receive a doctor of optometry degree. They are qualified to practice optometry, prescribe the right solutions and medicines for various eye disorders.

ii. Ophthalmologist

They are specialized eye and vision care doctors. Ophthalmologists differ from mentioned types of doctors as they have higher levels of training. They have a degree accompanied by 8 years of medical training and are allowed to practice medicine and surgery. They are capable to describe all the problems related to the eye, surgery and provide the right information concerning the eyeglasses, and correcting vision. Conducting scientific research regarding cures and causes is part of the profession.

iii. Optician

They’re technicians designed to verify and fit eyeglass lenses, contact lenses, frames, and other devices to improve eyesight. Creating eyeglasses and making them personalized for their customers is the job of an optician.

8. Is optometry a good option as a career?

Yes, choosing optometry as a career is a good choice. There are various benefits of choosing it as a career such as:

Work-life balance

You do not have to work overtime or extra time. Even pursuing other hobbies along with it is possible; depending on your workload.

Well structured, clean, and comfortable work environment

People belonging to this profession need not worry about getting exposed to chemicals or any harmful substances.

Low-stress job

This is a low-stress job involving limited emergencies or repetitive work.

More time interacting with patients

Routine exams take 15 to 20 minutes and hence, the chances of having a loyal customer increase.

You get to be your own boss

As mentioned, you have the option to start your individual practice. So, you can be boss and do not have to bother about working under unwanted pressure.

9. Conclusion

Optometry is a profession that cannot be taken lightly. The candidates belonging to this profession need to ensure they have the right knowledge about the course. Before you opt to enroll for an Optometry course in Vadodara, ensure you have the right insights into the field.

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