Tips For Finding A Great Eye Doctor

blue eye closeupJust like other organs in the body, the eyes have limitations and are susceptible to infections and diseases. In view of this, it is important to undergo and eye exam at least once in a year in order to ensure that your eyes remain in good shape. Unfortunately, finding an eye doctor in Chelsea NYC who can offer you the eye care you deserve can be quite challenging, especially if you are not aware of the different types of eye care professionals and the services they provide. Here are some steps to get you started.

Establish The Type Of Specialist You Need

The first and most important step that you need to take before selecting an eye care specialist is to identify your individual vision or eye care needs so that you can focus on finding an eye specialist who can meet your needs. In general, there are two main types of eye specialists- Chelsea optometrists and ophthalmologists. If you have a pre-existing eye disease or condition, you may need to consult a different specialist than a person who only requires a regular eye exam or needs Even though the services of different eye specialists sometimes overlap, such specialists generally fall under the following two broad categories:

  • Doctor of Optometry: These specialists are not physicians or medical doctors. However, they diagnose and treat eye problems, especially vision problems. If you need an eyeglass/ lenses prescription or simply need an eye exam this is the best specialist for you to see. Optometrists will also be able to do vision therapy, corneal reshaping therapy, LASIK consultations, LASIK therapy, contact lens fittings and prescribe sunglasses.
  • Ophthalmologists: These qualified physicians who can provide comprehensive eye care services and even perform eye surgery. If you have a pre-existing eye disease, this is the best specialist for you to consult.

Overall, when determining which type of eye specialist you need to see, the bottom line is that the best specialist for you is one who can meet all your eye care needs. You can determine an eye specialist’s area of expertise by reviewing his/her credentials or contacting the local eye specialists’ regulatory board in your area.

Get Referrals

If you have never visited an optometrist before and do not know here to begin your search for a good doctor, you can ask other people to recommend a great eye specialist. When seeking referrals, you can choose from the following three alternatives:

  • Consult your family doctor/physician: Your family doctor may be able to offer you the best referrals since he/she can make inquiries easily within the medical fraternity and even talk to several eye specialists and assess their suitability on your behalf before offering you any recommendations.
  • Consult relatives and friends: If any of your relatives of friends visit eye specialists regularly, they may be a reliable source of a referral since they have firsthand experience with the specialists they recommend. However, since your friends and relatives’ eye care needs may differ from yours, it is vital to assess the credentials of the specialists they recommend before booking an appointment.
  • Check out medical organizations’ listings: If none of the referrals given by your family doctor or friends/relatives works out, you can contact local medical organizations for further referrals. These organizations can provide specific information on the specialty, experience and location of different eye specialists in your area and make it easier for you to find a great eye specialist.

Review Professional Background and Experience

Once you create a shortlist of possible eye specialist candidates who can meet your needs based on the recommendations made by friends, relatives, doctors and medical organizations, the next important step is to assess the professional experience of your shortlisted candidates. You need to be meticulous when assessing the experience of any specialist since, in addition to professional training, experience may also improve the chances that a specialist will be able to address your eye care needs effectively. A doctor who has dealt with cases similar to yours effectively in the past may be able to offer better remedies in comparison to a newly qualified specialist. However, it is vital to understand that professional experience may not necessarily guarantee excellent service.

Evaluate Convenience

Once you have taken all the measures outlined above and narrowed down your list of potential eye care providers, the final step to take before making a final decision is to determine which specialist offers convenient services. Some of the factors to consider when determining convenience include; ease of scheduling appointments, proximity of a specialists’ clinic to your home or workplace and the suitability of the specialists’ payment process.

If you experience major hurdles while trying to booking an initial appointment or have to spend too much time travelling to the specialist’s clinic, you may be better off considering picking another of the candidates on your shortlist who offers convenient and efficient services. Similarly, if you establish that your preferred specialist does not accept payments from your insurance provider, you may have to reconsider your choice.

Conclusion

Overall, before you make your final decision and select an eye care specialist, it is advisable to book at least one initial appointment during which you can; try to create a rapport with the specialist, assess the values of the specialist’s practice and countercheck his/her credentials. If your initial appointment does not go as expected and eye specialist does not satisfy your needs, do not be afraid to try another specialist. Remember, you are not under any obligation to continue seeing a specialist who does not provide the level of service you need. The health of your eyes should be your priority and, to fulfill this priority, you can keep searching for a great eye specialist for as long as necessary.