What Are Refraction Eye Tests?

As part of your routine eye examination, you'll have a refraction eye test. Also known as a vision test, a refraction eye test plays a vital role in determining the health and visual capability of your eyes. 20/20 vision is a term that describes normal visual ability and a refraction eye examination determines how close or far away you are from achieving adequate 20/20 vision.

This test will enable the optometrist to determine whether the patient has a refractive error. This means that the light is not passing through the lens of the eye to be focussed at the retina as it should. A specially prescribed lens will correct this error and help towards attaining clearer vision for the client.

What is Its Purpose?

The results from the test will help the Optometrist determine whether the patient has the following eye defects.

  • Astigmatism
  • Hyperopia
  • Myopia
  • Presbyopia

If you would like to find out more about these eye conditions, take a look at our eye examinations page. Here, we go into detail about exactly how each condition impacts the patient and what we can do to help.

Who Can Benefit From a Refraction Eye Test?

Everyone can benefit from having a refraction eye test; it is more a question of how often the patient's eyes should be tested.

Healthy adults under 70 who experience vision issues

Every 2 years

Adults over the age of 70

Every year

Patient with family history of glaucoma

Every year


Every 6 months–2 years beginning at 3 years of age

A regular spectacles or contact lens wearer

Every 1–2 years

A regular spectacles or contact lens wearer that is experiencing issues

As soon as possible

If you have any questions about when you should be visiting your Opticians, please get in touch and one of our team members would be happy to provide expert guidance.