Optometrists: Salary, Job Description, How To Become One, and Quiz

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Job description

Optometrists diagnose, manage, and treat conditions and diseases of the human eye and visual system. Examine eyes and visual system, diagnose problems or impairments, prescribe corrective lenses, and provide treatment. May prescribe therapeutic drugs to treat specific eye conditions.

  • Examine eyes, using observation, instruments, and pharmaceutical agents, to determine visual acuity and perception, focus, and coordination and to diagnose diseases and other abnormalities, such as glaucoma or color blindness.
  • Prescribe, supply, fit and adjust eyeglasses, contact lenses, and other vision aids.
  • Analyze test results and develop a treatment plan.
  • Prescribe medications to treat eye diseases if state laws permit.
Read more about what does an Optometrist really do at work and what is it like being and working as one.

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Average salary
$119980 per year

Average hourly wage
$58 per hour

Optometrists with little to no experience tend to make between $57480 and $86260 while the more experienced ones can earn over $135660 per year.

Top 5 paying states Hourly Annual
ND $84 $175,090
VT $82 $170,550
AK $80 $165,640
SC $68 $142,290
MA $68 $141,890

One of the easiest ways to increase your salary as an Optometrist is to move to a higher paying state like ND. Right now, the highest paying states for Optometrists are ND, VT, AK, SC and MA.

However, a higher pay at ND doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the living expenses at ND might be twice as high than where you are currently at now.

Three other factors that can increase your salary as an Optometrist is the degree you hold, the industry you work in, and lastly the company you work for.


Recommended degree level
Doctoral degree

We asked other Optometrists what degree they had when they got the job and most of them said they had a PhD followed by a First Professional Degree.

Other than that, we also asked them what did they major in and here are the most popular majors that came up.

Read more about how to become an Optometrist and the degree, training and education you need.

Pros and Cons

Here are some of the pros and cons of being an Optometrist.

Suitable for people who likes to solve problems mentally
Suitable for people who wants job security and a good working condition
This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.
One of the fastest growing careers
Not suitable for people who likes to work with designs
It is very hard to get into this career. Extensive skill, knowledge, and experience is required for this career.

What is the job like

Job satisfaction

Is this job meaningful

81% of Optometrists said they were satisfied with their job and 86% said they feel like their job is making other people’s lives better.

Gerald Lambson
Source: Quora

Blair O'Reilly
Source: Quora

Tom Reagin
Source: Quora

Is this right for me

Best personality for this career
The Thinkers and The Helpers

You can read more about these career personality types here.

People who are suitable for this job tends to like working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. They like searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally..

They also like working with, communicating with, and teaching people. They like helping or providing service to others.

Learn more about Optometrists

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Related career information

Optometrists job description, Optometrists salary, Optometrists information, what is the job of an Optometrist like, pros and cons about Optometrists, colleges and universities for Optometrists, is Optometrists the right career for me, careers in Healthcare and Medical

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Chief, Optometry Service, Doctor of Optometry (OD), Eye Clinic Manager, Independent Contractor, Optometrist, Optometrist, Owner, Optometrist, President/Practice Owner, Optometrist/Practice Owner, Optometry Doctor (OD),

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