What does a functional vision assessment involve?
To understand your unique level of functional vision, orthoptists will conduct a ‘functional vision assessment’. The assessment is a series of tests designed to work out:
- What can you see?
- How far or close does something need to be for you to read the words?
- How bright does something need to be for you to read the text?
- Does the text need to be placed in a certain area or location for you to identify it?
- How long can you concentrate when reading or watching different things?
- Can you see things easier or more clearly if you look in a specific direction?
Sometimes, the answers to these questions can help an orthoptist to decide on the best techniques or assistive technologies for you.
In other situations, these tests can provide useful information for family members, friends, carers, or other health professionals. For example, if your child is too young to speak about their vision—or an older person cannot talk for any reason—a functional vision assessment can provide valuable information about how much they’re able to see, and in what unique situations, so that we can determine the best supports or options for their situation.
The tests are flexible depending on your story: sometimes they can be completed in one quick visit, and sometimes they may take a little longer, or require multiple visits.