If you’ve discovered you might need vision correction during your eye examination, it’s vital to determine just how “much” your eyes need to be corrected with lenses or contact lenses. This is called measuring your “refraction”.
While seated with your chin in a stabilizing chinrest, you’ll be asked to focus on an image or point of light. The autorefractor automatically determines the correction needed to place your “focus point” on top of the retina, the light-sensitive area at the back of the eye responsible for correctly processing images.
The measurement taken by an autorefractor is used as a starting point to determine the prescription for eyeglasses.
In eye exams for small children, or for people with special needs who may have trouble sitting calmly during an extended exam, or verbally describing their vision problems—autorefractors give highly accurate measurements used to determine vision correction needs, automatically.
How do autorefractors work?
Autorefractors only take a few moments to give an estimate of the refraction required in each eye. They are used in conjunction with a machine called a phoroptor to manually switch lenses in front of your eyes to provide ideal vision correction.