Easing sight test anxiety
While a sight test is fairly routine, it's important to consider easing anxiety for those who find it a struggle. Anxiety, stress and frustration can be the result of a fear of eyes (ommetaphobia), communication difficulties or general discomfort. Many conditions can make people feel socially or emotionally uncomfortable, which can cause them to not provide all of the relevant information. It's important that an optometrist has the means to engage with these individuals and help ease their anxiety. As a sight test contributes to our general health, it’s important that optometrists have the means to engage with all individuals. So it is essential the optometrist will take the time to communicate with them.
How can we ease sight test anxiety?
Our optometrists undergo training to understand and respond appropriately based on the individual's needs.
We train our optometrists to deliver a sight test with dignity, integrity and respect for the individual.
Presenting in a calm, friendly and respectful manner helps ensure the person is comfortable.
When an individual is calm and co-operative, our optometrist is then able to carry out a sight test.
We know that a subjective response isn’t always possible though (i.e. responding to a letter chart).
So our optometrists are trained to use alternative equipment to deliver an objective sight test to non-communicative individuals.
By easing sight test anxiety using this skill set, we can enable a person to have a regular sight test.
However, it's vital that the individual is co-operative and willing to sit (even briefly) so our optometrist can carry out the sight test.
A regular sight test is important to check for any changes in a person's prescription and their eye health.
Someone who experiences anxiety, stress and agitation during a sight test still needs their sight and eye health checked.
As Visioncall optometrists make use of both subjective and objective testing, these individuals are able to have a regular sight test.
Visioncall understands that when a person can see better, they can live better.
Additional care needs
A person with expressed additional care needs may not be in a position to clearly communicate their needs or concerns to someone in charge of their care.
It's important that when we care for those who need additional care, we're able to communicate with them.
Empathy and patience enable caring professionals to engage and draw a verbal or non-verbal response from a person.
This response is vital to truly understand a person's needs and preferences.
Avoiding assumptions about a person's preferences is key to achieving person-centred care.
That's why Visioncall ensures that all of our optometrists and dispensers are trained extensively.
Easing sight test anxiety is possible simply by communicating and listening to an individual.