What Does 20/25 Vision Mean? (2023)

What does 20/25 vision mean?

If you have 20/25 vision, it means you’re just a tiny bit blurry compared to most other people. It could be that you have a slight glasses prescription, it could be that you have dry eyes, or it could be many other things.

For your reference, here are some different visual acuities that kind of help you to know roughly what the different vision is like:


This is close to the limit of human vision. It’s estimated by anatomists that 20/5 is probably the absolute limit in regards to our retinal cellular make up. Reportedly WWII fighter pilot Chuck Yeager could see 20/8 which would mean he could see fighter jets coming from 50 miles away in the sky. 20/10 vision is typically observed very healthy young people. It’s estimated that about 3% of the population is capable of seeing 20/10, which means that about one person out of 33 is capable of seeing 20/10 even with glasses.

(Video) What is 20/20 Vision?


This is excellent vision. It also is observed in young healthy people with healthy ocular surfaces. Many times someone with an extreme degree of nearsightedness or astigmatism is not capable of seeing 20/15. It’s estimated however that about two people out of three are capable of seeing 20/15.


This is considered “average“ vision. There are many people that are not capable of seeing this well due to any number of reasons or pathologic conditions. Many healthy young people also can see no better than 20/20. It’s almost always difficult for someone to see the 20/15 line, but most healthy people should be able to see the 20/20 line.


This is the point where most states’ departments of motor vehicles (DOT) require someone to see during the night time in order to get a driver’s license for day and night driving. Its roughly the uncorrected vision of someone who has -1.00 glasses or contacts. It’s also the point where most people who have cataracts start to notice that they are not seeing well. If your vision is 20/40 or worse and you have a cataract, it’s likely time to get it out. See your eye doctor for an evaluation, or call us at 425-451-2020 or schedule a cataract evaluation atsharpe-vision.com.

(Video) Ask an Eyes Doc: What does 20/20 vision even mean?


This is the point at which you must be able to see in order to get a driver’s license for daytime only vision. Many people have visual conditions that allow them to maintain their independence but are not legally allowed to drive after dark due to their decreased vision. Many conditions can cause vision to decrease but cataract, glaucoma, and macular degeneration are the most common causes in the United States.


This is very confusing because most people who need glasses will see worse than this without their glasses, but can see 20/20 or better with their glasses. Most people say they are “legally blind” when they simply need glasses to see clearly. The definition of “Legal blindness” is when someone can see no better than 20/200 vision in the better of their two eyes even with glasses. These are people who have some pathology going on, not those who simply need to wear glasses.


This is the big “E” on the vision chart. Typically it is placed 20 feet away from the observer. If you cannot see the big E even with glasses, you may have what’s called low vision and be eligible for government aid. It’s very difficult to function in society with this level of vision without the extensive aid in the form of companion animals, “seeing-eye dogs,” low vision aids, magnifying glasses, etc.

(Video) Do I need glasses if I have 25/25 vision?

For this particular blog we have decided to discuss “what is 20/25 vision?”

It’s often confusing to my patients when we talk about anything other than 20/20 vision. Most people know that 20/20 vision is good, but they don’t know what 20/25 vision means. Is 20/25 vision good? What is 20/25 vision? So I’ll try to help you understand 20/25 vision meaning. 20/25 vision simply means that what you (first number) can see at 20 feet, someone with average (good) vision can see at 25 feet. It’s therefore slightly below the average, because the average person can see it a little farther away. Conversely, if you have 20/15 vision, you can see clearly at 20 feet what someone with average vision could see clearly at 15 feet. That is, they would have to get closer to the vision chart to see it. You can see it farther away. Most healthy people can get to 20/15 vision. At SharpeVision we are concerned about the amount of prescription, general ocular health, your age, and visual needs. However we are also concerned if we cannot get someone to see 20/25 or better vision with their glasses, there are many causes (see previous post on “why is my eyesight getting worse?“).

The vision charts that we use in our doctors’ offices are standardized so that one eye doctor can tell another eye doctor what someone’s vision is and they should be able to replicate that in their own clinic. The charts have been around since the mid-1800s. Although they have been modified slightly, they are still very similar to what we used a long time ago. What you can see on a vision chart is important, but there are other very important functions of your vision. There is contrast sensitivity, which describes something that is washed out versus dark, and clear. There is your visual field, which is important to be able to see objects in your peripheral vision. Someone could have excellent acuity, and see 20/15 but have very little peripheral vision. This could happen if vision had been compromised by something like glaucoma, a stroke, or other damage to the visual cortex part of the brain. Other elements of visual function include color sensitivity. About one in seven males has decreased red-green color vision, and is called “cold-blind.” There are other types of color vision deficits but that is the most common. There is stereo vision or depth perception which is also extremely important to determine the distance of objects as they approach. Depth perception is possible to some extent with one eye but works much better with two eyes. One last element of visual function is the ability to change your point of focus from distance to near. Everyone gets presbyopia, which is the loss of flexibility of the lens for which prevents someone from seeing both distance and near, typically after the age of about 45.

As you can tell, there are many different types of vision. It is truly incredible the sensitivity and complexity of our visual systems. As an Ophthalmologist, it’s my job and duty to help people maintain healthy vision throughout their lives. At SharpeVision, we are focused on helping people get out of glasses so that they can have crisp clear uncorrected vision without any glasses or contact lenses. If someone couldn’t walk 20 feet, we would do everything we could to help them walk without help. If someone can’t see 20 feet, we should do the same – give us a call or schedule online at 425-451-2020 or sharpe–vision.com.

(Video) what is 20/20 vision (more detailed)

What Does 20/25 Vision Mean? (1)

-Dr. Matthew Sharpe


Is having 20 25 vision good? ›

20/25 vision isn't bad, it's just slightly below normal vision. Having 20/25 vision means you need to be 5 feet closer to an object to see it as clearly as someone with 20/20 vision. About 35% of adults have 20/20 vision, which is considered average. 20/20 vision isn't the sharpest level of vision.

Do I need glasses if I have 20 25 vision? ›

While 20/20 vision is considered the standard, it's important to know what bad vision is. If you were to have a visual acuity of 20/25, you typically won't need glasses or other corrective lenses. Corrective lenses wouldn't change your vision much nor improve your quality of life.

What is 20 25 eye prescription? ›

If you have 20/25 vision, it means that your vision is not as good as average because it means that objects are clear to someone from 25 feet but are only clear to you from 20 feet. The 20/20 vision is considered as normal visual acuity. But, 20/25 vision does not mean bad vision.

Can you drive with 20 25 vision? ›

The minimum requirement for visual acuity is 20/40 acuity with or without corrective lenses. Drivers with acuity between 20/41 and 20/70 are limited to daylight driving only. You must have at least 140 degree peripheral vision (the ability to see to the side) to have a license without restrictions.

At what vision are glasses needed? ›

20/200+: This means you have a significant vision issue. You will most likely need to wear glasses all the time.

What vision is better 20 20 or 25 25? ›

Is 25/25 vision better than 20/20? No. 25/25 means normal sharpness of vision, or visual acuity, at 25 feet just as 20/20 indicates normal vision at 20 feet.

Is 25 legally blind? ›

If you're legally blind, your vision is 20/200 or less in your better eye or your field of vision is less than 20 degrees. That means if an object is 200 feet away, you have to stand 20 feet from it in order to see it clearly.

What does 20 25 and 20 30 vision mean? ›

The top number is your distance in feet from the chart. The bottom number is the distance at which a person with normal eyesight can read the same line. For example, if you have 20/30 vision, it means your vision is worse than average. Twenty feet away, you can read letters most people see from 30 feet.

Do I need glasses for 25 astigmatism? ›

What Level of Astigmatism Requires Glasses? You'll likely need glasses if your astigmatism has a strength of 1.0 or more. But even if your astigmatism needs less than 1.0 diopters of correction, it doesn't mean you won't need glasses.

What is a perfect vision prescription? ›

Visual acuity of 20/20 is considered “perfect vision” because no aids are required to see better, but people can have better than 20/20 vision. Many young people are able to see letters smaller than the general “20/20” size.

What does +4.00 mean on an eye prescription? ›

In general, the further away from zero the number on your prescription, the worse your eyesight and the more vision correction (stronger prescription) you need. A “plus” (+) sign in front of the number means you are farsighted, and a “minus” (-) sign means you are nearsighted.

What is considered perfect eyesight? ›

What is “Perfect” Vision? While 20/20 vision is considered to be perfect, it's not actually what we think of as perfect. Many people, mostly children, have better than 20/20 vision. Healthy eyes can easily go down to the 20/15 level with some accuracy.

How far can you see with 20 25 vision? ›

For example, 20/25 vision means that the person can see at 20 feet what a person with normal vision can see at 25 feet. If you want to improve your vision, talk to an optometrist or ophthalmologist about your options. LASIK or other corrective eye surgery could help you to achieve better vision.

At what vision should you stop driving? ›

“You must have a visual acuity at least 0.8 (6/7.5) measured on the Snellen scale in your best eye and at least 0.1 (6/60) on the Snellen scale in the other eye. You can reach this standard using glasses with a corrective power not more than (+) 8 dioptres, or with contact lenses.

What prescription do you need glasses to drive? ›

So, even if the DMV may say your vision isn't bad enough to require glasses for driving, I often recommend driving glasses to anyone with less than 20/20 vision.

What is the lowest eye prescription? ›

The lowest strength is usually 1.00 diopters. Glasses go up in strength by factors of . 25 (1.50, 1.75, 2.00). The strongest glasses are 4.00 diopters.

What is 20 70 eye grade equivalent to? ›

20/30 to 20/60, this is considered mild vision loss, or near-normal vision. 20/70 to 20/160, this is considered moderate visual impairment, or moderate low vision. 20/200 or worse, this is considered severe visual impairment, or severe low vision.

Is it okay to not wear glasses all the time? ›

If you're an adult who needs glasses due to blurred vision, not wearing glasses doesn't make your eyes worse, but it makes your eyes work harder. Corrective glasses allow your eyes to work less hard which reduces eye strain and all the other unpleasant effects of not wearing your glasses (when you need them).

Do you need glasses for 20 30 vision? ›

With 20/30 vision, the level of visual acuity is considered to be within the normal range. Not surprisingly, many people with 30/30 vision are able to see well enough to live without glasses or contacts.

Is 20/15 the best vision possible? ›

Is it possible? Absolutely! In fact, most healthy people are capable of better than 20/20 vision . If you are capable of seeing 20/15 with glasses, then there is a 98% chance we can get you seeing that without glasses at SharpeVision through laser vision correction.

What are the 3 types of vision? ›

Types of Vision
  • Emmetropia. If you have emmetropia it means you have ideal distance vision and don't need lenses to correct your vision. ...
  • Farsightedness. If you are farsighted it means you can see well at a distance, but things up close are blurry. ...
  • Presbyopia.

What is bad eyesight numbers? ›

-3.00 diopters or less is mild. -3.00 to -6.00 diopters is moderate. -6.00 to -9.00 diopters is severe. -9.00 diopters or more is extreme.

What number is considered blind? ›

Visual acuity less than 20/200 is considered legally blind, but to actually fit the definition, the person must not be able to attain 20/200 vision even with prescription eyewear. Many people who would be legally blind without eyewear can function well in everyday life with appropriate glasses or contact lenses.

What vision is legally blind at night? ›

Legally blind refers to vision that is 20/200 or less in your better eye that cannot be corrected with standard glasses or contacts, or a visual field of 20 degrees or less.

What is normal vision? ›

Having 20/20 vision means you have normal or average, vision. Some people have vision that's better than 20/20, like 20/15 vision or 20/10 vision. This means that you can see something 20 feet away (like a line on an eye chart) that most people can see when they're 15 feet away (20/15) or 10 feet away (20/10).

What line is 20 40 on the eye chart? ›

The third line is equivalent to 20/40, it is the driver's test line.

What does 20 30 and 20 40 vision mean? ›

If someone has 20/20 vision, it means they can see the same amount of detail from 20 feet away as the average person. If someone has a visual acuity of 20/40, they can see the same amount of detail from 20 feet away as the average person would see from 40 feet away.

Whats the worst number for astigmatism? ›

Mild Astigmatism <1.00 diopters. Moderate Astigmatism 1.00 to 2.00 diopters. High Astigmatism 2.00 to 4.00 diopters. Extreme Astigmatism > 4.00 diopters.

What do lights look like with astigmatism? ›

Astigmatism can distort lights in several ways, and instead of a clear image, you might see: Streaky lights. Haloed lights. Blurry lights.

What is the normal range for astigmatism? ›

Astigmatism is measured in diopters. A perfect eye with no astigmatism has 0 diopters. Most people have between 0.5 to 0.75 diopters of astigmatism. People with a measurement of 1.5 or more typically need contacts or eyeglasses to have clear vision.

Who has the best eyesight in the world? ›

Eagles are thought to have the best eyesight of all; their eyes are as many as eight times sharper than ours. We don't do too badly either. Our vision is four to seven times as sharp as those of cats and dogs and 100 times sharper than that of a mouse or fruit fly!

Is 4.75 legally blind? ›

Simply put, if your prescription is -2.5 or lower, this means that you are legally blind. Visual acuity of -2.5 is equivalent to 20/200 vision. Visual acuity of -3.0, for instance, means that you have 20/250 or 20/300 vision. From there, visual acuity of -4.0 means that you have 20/400 vision.

Is +0.25 a strong prescription? ›

If your number is between +0.25 and +2.00, you have mild farsightedness. If your number is between +2.25 and +5.00, you have moderate farsightedness. If your number is greater than +5.00, you have high farsightedness.

What does 0.25 mean on an eye test? ›

The amount of astigmatism (visual distortion) that is caused by an irregularly shaped cornea. If this box is empty, it means that there is no astigmatism and your eyes are perfectly spherical. A low number like 0.25 means your eyes are not quite round and a higher number like 3.00 means your eyes are quite oval.

How does 20 40 vision look like? ›

20/40 vision means you can only see as well as what a normal person can see at 40 feet away. You may notice some blurriness at this stage and may require some form of vision correction.

Does 20 30 vision need glasses? ›

With 20/30 vision, the level of visual acuity is considered to be within the normal range. Not surprisingly, many people with 30/30 vision are able to see well enough to live without glasses or contacts.

What is 20 70 vision like? ›

If someone has 20/70 visual acuity (meaning that they can only see something 20 feet away as well as something a person with normal vision can see from 70 feet away) or worse in their best eye even with corrective lenses, they have “low vision.” If they have 20/200 visual acuity in their best eye or worse, they are ...

What does 20 50 vision look like? ›

A person with 20/50 vision can clearly see something 20 feet away that a person with normal vision can see clearly from a distance of 50 feet. Bad distance vision was considered "improved" if corrections boosted visual acuity to 20/40 or better.

What is weak eyesight number? ›

"Partially sighted": the person has visual acuity between 20/70 and 20/200 with conventional prescription lenses. "Legally blind": the person has visual acuity no better than 20/200 with conventional correction and/or a restricted field of vision less than 20 degrees wide.

Does 20 40 vision need glasses? ›

A person with 20/40 vision sees things at 20 feet that most people who don't need vision correction can see at 40 feet. This means that they are nearsighted, but only slightly. A person with 20/40 vision may or may not need eyeglasses or contacts, and can discuss his or her options with a doctor.

Is 20 40 vision good? ›

Is 20/40 Vision Bad? Although 20/40 vision is less acute than average, that doesn't mean you should think of it as “bad.” Someone with 20/40 vision just wouldn't be able to see clearly at quite as far of a distance as someone with “normal” vision.

Do I need glasses if my vision is 20 50? ›

This is four lines worse than 20/20 (considered normal, or “perfect” vision) on an eye exam chart. If you can see 20/50 without your glasses, you will not need a special condition put on your license requiring you to wear corrective lenses such as glasses or contacts.


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