What is an At-Home Eye Test?

While you'll need to go to the optometrist for a comprehensive eye exam, you can do a simple vision test at home with our at-home eye test.

This printable eye chart is a convenient and accessible method for individuals to assess their vision without visiting an optometrist's office. This resource is based on a vision test called the Snellen test, which tests visual acuity and can be conducted using just your computer screen.

This at-home eye test is not a substitute for a comprehensive eye exam but can be used as a simple vision test for addressing eye health concerns early on and prior to seeing a trained professional for a full vision screening.

Printable At Home Eye Test

Download this At Home Eye Test that serves as accessible method for individuals to assess their vision without visiting an optometrist's office.

Signs and symptoms you need an eye test

Several signs and symptoms that may indicate the need for an eye test. These include:

  • Changes in your vision: Any changes in your vision, getting worse on either side or both, can indicate it's time to book an eye exam. It's essential to get on top of changes in your vision and correct for these early on.
  • Blurred vision: If you're noticing persistent blurry vision, it may indicate refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism.
  • Eye strain: Frequent headaches, eye fatigue, or discomfort can all be signs that it's time to book your next eye exam.
  • Difficulty focusing: If you find it challenging to focus on objects up close or far away, this could indicate an underlying problem like myopia, astigmatism, or eye strain. This is a vital sign that it's time to book an ophthalmologic exam.
  • Squinting: Constant squinting may be a subconscious effort to improve focus and a signal that your vision needs to be corrected to reduce eye strain.

Benefits of assessing eye health

The main benefit of assessing your eye health is the early detection of any issues and getting treatment such as corrective lenses, contact lenses, or medications kickstarted.

Some eye conditions cause your vision to change gradually. You might not have realized your vision or eye health is declining slowly over time, but the longer you wait between eye exams- the more advanced problems like astigmatism, dry eyes, or blurry vision can get. If you're straining more than you need to, this might result in headaches or excess tiredness that can be corrected with glasses or contacts- giving you a better quality of life.

Additionally, for some professions- such as pilots, it's important to examine your eye health periodically.

How to conduct an at-home eye test

If you find yourself between eye exams, or aren't quite ready to make the booking with your eye doctor, then an at-home eye test can be a great way to check your current prescription, or get a general idea of any vision problems.

To start using our online vision test, follow the simple steps below.

Step 1. Download the eye chart

The first step is to access your free download of this resource using the link on this page.

Step 2. Ensure correct sizing

The next step is to ensure that the Snellen chart is at the correct magnification. To facilitate this, there is a "1 cm" guideline in the top left of the template. Zoom in or out on your computer screen until this line measures 1cm across.

Alternatively, print out the eye test and check the measurement of the 1 cm guideline once printed. You may need to adjust your print settings up to 111% to get the perfect result, so it might be easier to leave it in digital form if possible.

Step 3. Create a quiet environment

Minimize distractions and ensure proper lighting in the room where you're conducting the test. If using a computer monitor, be sure the brightness and contrast are optimal for your vision.

Step 4. Move back 20 feet

It's time to get the measuring tape out!! This test is designed to be read at 6 meters or 20 feet. You might need to set up in a corridor or along the length of a large room to get the required distance.

Step 5. Read as far down the rows as you can

Next, start reading each row from the top down. Have a helper sitting closer to the eye test to check your answers. Once you reach a row where you can't read the letters correctly, look for the numbers in the right-most column, as these correspond to your visual acuity.

At-Home Eye Test example

For your convenience, our team has created a sample template you can use when educating patients about this eye test. You can view it here or download below.

Download the free At-Home Eye Test example here

At-Home Eye Test example

Is this at home vision test reliable and accurate?

Home vision tests will never be as accurate as complete eye exams conducted in a doctor's office by a trained professional. As such, it is crucial to use these tests as a supplementary tool and not to replace visits to your optometrist.

For a thorough evaluation and accurate diagnosis, consult an eye care professional who can conduct a comprehensive examination tailored to your needs. Regular professional eye exams remain the gold standard for ensuring optimal eye health and promptly addressing potential issues.

Why use Carepatron as your optometry software?

Are you an optometrist or ophthalmologist looking for a way to share resources like this at-home eye test with your patients? Carepatron offers a dedicated patient portal where your patients can access any of our thousands of pre-formatted resources and their results or book appointments with you.

But that's not all, you can conduct telehealth appointments from Carepatron's video conferencing software, and even transcribe meetings with our smart dictation software.

If you're looking to improve your practice's administration and efficiency, look no further than Carepatron's comprehensive software suite designed for modern practices looking to benefit from automation and smart software to save time.

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What is a Snellen test?
What is a Snellen test?

Commonly asked questions

What is a Snellen test?

A Snellen test is a commonly used eye chart test designed to measure visual acuity. The test features a chart with letters or symbols of various sizes arranged in rows. During the examination, an individual is asked to read the letters or symbols from a specific distance, often 20 feet or 6 meters.

What does 20/20 vision mean?

The term "20/20 vision" refers to the visual acuity considered normal for human eyesight. Someone with 20/20 vision can read at a distance of 20 feet the same letters that a person with normal vision can also see at 20 feet. 20/15, therefore means that they can see at 20 feet what a person with normal vision can only see at 15 feet. Conversely, if someone has vision worse than 20/20, like 20/30, it means they need to be at 20 feet to see what a person with normal vision can see at 30 feet.

Should I wear glasses to do an eye test?

If you already wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, you should also wear them during your eye test. This means you will be measuring your aided or corrected visual acuity, which better represents your day-to-day vision if you wear corrective lenses every day.

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