Millennials believe that “20/20 vision” implies perfect vision, but this isn’t necessarily true. In some literature, 20/20 vision is also referred to as normal vision.
These pronouncements need to be straightened out because the truth is, what makes up a good vision is much more than being able to read the 20/20 line at your eye examination.
In this article, we will tackle what exactly 20/20 vision is, what it’s not, and why you should not believe common misconceptions about it.
What Is 20/20 Vision?
The term 20/20 vision means being able to read or see clearly what an average person can at 20 feet. For the record, your vision pertains to the relationship between your eyes and your brain that helps you perceive, understand, and interact with your surroundings.
The 20/20 test at your eye doctor’s clinic is only meant to measure your eyesight, but not your vision. At best, 20/20 vision only indicates how sharp or clear your vision is.
Let’s be clear then: 20/20 vision doesn’t equate to perfect vision. Perhaps we should all start referring to it as 20/20 visual acuity as there are many other factors to consider if someone has a good vision such as eye focusing, eye coordination, visual perceptual skills, and color vision, among others.
The 20/20 Vision and Other Myths
If you have mistaken beliefs about the 20/20 vision, the following might sound familiar to you. However, you should, at the very least, know the real deal.
Is It Possible to See Better Than 20/20?
This one is an irrefutable fact. Since we agree that 20/20 is not exactly a perfect vision, it’s safe to say that there may be others who are capable of having a sharper vision at, say, 20/15 – or being able to see at 20 feet what an average person can only see at a distance of 15 feet.
How is it possible, you might ask? Some factors may be at play here. For one, people have longer lifespan nowadays, which means age-related physiological changes including those involving the vision are happening at a much later time among members of this generation.
Another viable explanation is that we have more advanced printing methods today, and in effect, the ideal visual acuity may be represented by one’s ability to identify letters that are a tad smaller than those found in the traditional eye chart developed by ophthalmologist Herman Snellen back in the 1860s.
Further, medical technology has paved the way for such procedures as LASIK, a vision correction surgery which makes use of a laser to reshape the inner cornea. You may also opt to wear special contact lenses that cover the uneven front surface of your eyes with their flawlessly smooth, curved lenses for better focus.
Some eye issues cannot be fixed with contact lenses or eyeglasses alone. The best recourse to a good vision is to keep a healthy outlook every step of the way. You should also make it a habit of seeing your eye doctor who, like your mother, will tell you what’s best for you.