In eye care there are several specialties: optometrists, opticians, and ophthalmologists. Optometrist execute general eye exams, which often leads to prescriptions for glasses or contacts, and may also attend to some basic eye conditions. Opticians typically manufacture and retail corrective lenses in a variety of locations based upon the prescription written by an optometrist or ophthalmologist. Overall eye care is the specialty of an ophthalmologist. Laser surgery is also on the rise for those who can afford it, and often can eliminate the need glasses or contacts.
In the eye care industry, demand is affected by changing health care practices, fashion trends for eye wear, and demographics. The profits of an optometrist practice vary depending on factors such as whether or not it sells eye wear in addition to providing eye examinations.