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Your vision matters

23 September 2019


The importance of regular eyes tests is being highlighted by Luton and Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Groups during National Eye Health Week (23 – 29 September 2019).

The NHS recommends everyone should have their eyes tested every two years or more often if advised by their optician. A sight test is not just about seeing whether you need to wear glasses, it can detect early signs of conditions like glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration which, if found early enough, can be treated to prevent sight loss.

An eye examination by an optician not only helps maintain good eye health, it can detect other health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.    

Parents are also advised to look out for signs their children may need an eye test. These include sitting close to the TV, holding objects very close to their face, excessive blinking, eye rubbing or one eye turning in or out.

NHS eye tests are free for children under the age of 16 and for young people up to the age of 18 who are in full-time education. Older people aged 60 and over are eligible for free eye tests, as are those who are registered as partially sighted or blind or who have a medical condition such as diabetes. Anyone receiving income support or certain other state benefits also qualify for free NHS eye tests.

By following good general health and lifestyle advice can help you to keep your eyes healthy. Your eyes will benefit from giving up smoking, keeping well hydrated and wearing sun glasses in bright sunlight.

In the UK there are two-million people living with a visual impairment so severe it significantly impacts on their daily lives. According to the Royal National Institute for the Blind around half of this sight loss is preventable.*

The level of avoidable sight loss in the UK is unacceptably high. Your vision matters, so don’t take your eyes for granted and book an appointment at your local optician.

To find an optician near you visit www.nhs.uk/service-search/Opticians/LocationSearch/9 

*https://www.rnib.org.uk/professionals/knowledge-and-research-hub/research-reports/prevention-sight-loss 

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