Eye Checks for Drivers

April 21, 2022


Almost 38,000 people lose their lives in motor vehicle accidents every year, and the cost of these accidents is in the tens of billions of dollars. No matter your age, being able to clearly see the road and your surroundings while driving is one of the best ways for you to keep yourself safe. However, how many people take the time to make sure they are seeing as clearly as they want to?

What are the Standards for Driving?

There are certain standards of vision that you must meet in order to get a driver’s license in the state of Virginia. When you are at the DMV getting your license, they will test your vision by asking you to look into a machine and read lines of letters or numbers. You can wear glasses or contact lenses to take the test, but if you do then you must also wear them whenever you drive. The DMV will test both your “visual acuity” (how well you see) and your “horizontal vision” (how much you can see side to side). Your visual acuity must be 20/40 or better in one or both eyes, and your horizontal vision must be 110 degrees or better in one or both eyes. You must be able to pass this vision test in order to get your license, and if you fail you may be required by the DMV to visit your eye doctor.

How Can a Doctor Help?

Many things can cause poor vision for people of all ages. Your glasses or contact lens prescription might have changed and you need a new one. You might have developed cataracts and want to have them removed. You might have an underlying medical condition that is causing damage to your eyes that needs to be treated. Your eye doctor can help identify what is causing your vision problems and work with you to address them.

Make an Appointment

If you feel concerned about your vision when you drive, or would simply like to have your eyes checked, schedule an appointment at Anh Nguyen Ophthalmology by calling (703) 534-4393 or requesting your appointment online.


Vision Screening. Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles. (n.d.).

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, November 5). State-specific costs of motor vehicle crash deaths. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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