Floor space isn’t cheap in Singapore, but thankfully we are located in a suburban mall. So why don’t we do a mini refraction room with the chart placed closer?
The reason is simple – we value the accuracy of our refractions.
When we perform a refraction, the eye is ideally in a relaxed state, and the best way to achieve this is for you to look at something really far away (or use eye drops to relax the eye muscles, but that is only done under certain circumstances).
When the chart is placed closer to you, your eyes have to accommodate or focus in order to see the chart clearly. This means that the prescription obtained is not exactly for distance vision, since the chart wasn’t at “distance”, and will have to be adjusted for the amount of eye accommodation caused by the closer distance.
Hence, most refraction rooms have to be sufficiently large with the vision chart placed far away enough that it does not interfere with the accommodation. Yes, it costs more, like getting more leg-room in first class on a flight, but it is definitely worth it.
Also, we use a digital chart where we can isolate letters and randomise letters, rather than a fixed chart that can be memorised.