What Is 20/20 Vision?

July 28, 2023


When talking about vision, you’ve likely heard the phrase 20/20 thrown around a lot. It’s even entered our daily lexicon— “hindsight is 20/20.” However, what actually is 20/20 vision?

The eye experts at OOMC are here to dig into 20/20 vision and discuss what it means, what you can do if your vision isn’t 20/20, and what causes vision to change.

Let’s get started!

What Does 20/20 Vision Actually Mean?

Child eye exam20/20 vision means you have normal vision acuity. You have clarity of vision when looking at an object 20 feet away.

Those with 20/20 vision do not need glasses or vision correction. An eye exam, using a Snellen chart, is what’s used to determine your visual acuity.

People can have greater visual acuity than 20/20, such as 20/15. This means someone can see an object clearly from 15 feet away, that most people can view clearly at 20 feet.

If your vision heads in the opposite direction, such as 20/40, it may be time to consider corrective lenses or contacts.

20/20 vision does not include measures of peripheral vision, depth perception, or your ability to see colors. These parts of your vision may also be measured during a standard eye exam.

What Causes Vision To Change?

Some people are born farsighted or nearsighted, making their visual acuity something other than 20/20. Astigmatism—a part of the eye with an irregular curve—can also affect visual acuity.

However, vision can change for a variety of reasons, including:

  • Age
  • Cataracts
  • Disability progression

As people age, their vision changes. Many people need glasses as they get older because their eyes age along with them.

Some people also develop cataracts—a clouding of the lens in your eye. This can affect the way you see without vision correction.

Some disabilities can lead to vision changes as well. Diabetes, thyroid issues, glaucoma, and macular degeneration can lead to vision loss or changes, which may require corrective lenses or additional eye care.

What Can I Do if My Vision Is Not 20/20?

eye doctor recomandationsIf you believe your vision has changed or you may not have 20/20 vision, schedule an eye exam. An optometrist will inform you of any vision changes that may be going on.

Your optometrist may also recommend vision correction options, such as glasses, contacts, or refractive surgery.

Your optometrist may suggest you go to an eye center, like one of OOMC’s practices, for refractive surgery and other specialty eye treatments.

At OOMC, we’ll consult your current eye doctor to develop a treatment plan customized to your specific vision needs.

Refractive surgery reshapes your cornea, allowing light to focus correctly on the retina and improve your visual acuity.

LASIK can often correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. Cataract surgery can remove and replace the cloudy lens, with a lens implant to improve your vision.

Learn More About Your Vision Options

If you’re looking for vision correction options or cataract treatments to improve your vision, an OOMC practice can help. We offer refractive surgery options, including LASIK and treatment for cataracts.

Contact us to schedule a free LASIK consultation or appointment to discuss cataract treatment options today.

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