I started to notice problems with blurry vision. Having never needed contacts I was wondering what was up with my vision. I decided I needed to get my eyes checked out. I went to the Lenscrafters website
and found a nearby location. I was able to make an appointment online for the same day. When I showed up at the store, it was a bit busy there, but the receptionist right away asked if she could help me. I gave her my name and she had my appointment in the system. She told me to have a seat or look around the store at frames and someone would be with me shortly. Within about 10 minutes, my name was called and I went back to meet with one of the assistants. She took my information and basic health history as well as any insurance information. She also then had me do the basic eye exam steps including looking in the machine (similar to what they have at the driver's test) where you are asked to read the lowest line you can make out. Then they had me do this test where I had to identify which part of an object appeared in 3-D. I then looked into a machine which they said would automatically determine my refraction (I think that was the word they used). Last, I had the test where a puff of air is blown in your eyes. After those steps, she said that since I hadn't had an eye exam in many years, it was recommended I have a peripheral vision test as well as a photograph taken of my retina. I said I agreed.
They took me to another room where they did a test of my peripheral vision by looking in a machine and clicking a button when I saw lines wiggle on the screen. They then took a picture of my retinas with this giant machine where they position your head just right. It then is a very quick flash of light and the picture is taken. They didn't need to dilate my eyes at all. They then said I would see the optometrist.
Because they were so busy, I was asked to have a seat in the waiting area until a room was ready. It was about 15 minutes of waiting and then I went in to a room. The screen saver was busy promoting the retinal photograph machine while I waiting a few more minutes and then the optometrist came in. She had me do the "which one is better, 1 or 2?" for each of my eyes. If you dont' know what I'm referring to, that's when they flip different lenses in front of your eyes and they ask you which one looks better. They do it for a bunch of different lenses testing for different problems. She then had me read a close up sentence to check my near vision. She then checked to make sure my pupils reacted to light properly. She then showed me the photos that had been taken of my retina and she pointed out the optic nerve and the fovea. Based on the vision exam, she said I was slightly far-sighted with an astigmatism.
I was asked to pick out frames. I'm not sure why they mix the men's and women's frames together, other than many frames are maybe for either/or. I found a set of frames I liked. I then sat down with one of the sales people and he asked what kind of lenses I want. He was trying to convince me to get the featherweight or featherweight plus lenses saying they are lighter, stronger, and have UV protection built in. I asked how much more it would cost me, and he checked with my insurance (which turns out to be pretty good), but the featherweight was $40 more and the featherweight plus was $75 more. As this is my first pair of glasses, and I don't need to wear them all of the time, I decided to just go with plastic lenses. I figure if I don't like them, I can get another pair in about a year. After doing more research now at home, I see that featherweight lenses are made of polycarbonate which is extremely strong, but more susceptible to scratches than plastic. So basically they won't shatter, but they will scratch unless you take good are of them.
As for the cost of the exam, it was $95. I think my insurance paid only $5 towards the exam. However, as that went towards my total deductable, I was able to get my frames and lenses for a very good price. The retail price for the frames was around $100. I'm not sure how much the lenses would have been without insurance.