Regular eye tests are important, not only will the optometrist tell you if you require glasses or have a change in prescription, but they will also carry out eye health checks to spot any early signs of eye conditions before they become a problem.
Optometrists are highly trained and can recognise abnormalities and conditions that could be causing eye problems. They will prescribe and fit glasses and contact lenses, and, if necessary, they will refer you to a GP or a hospital eye clinic for further investigations.
The NHS recommend you get an eye test every two years (more often if advised by your ophthalmic practitioner or optometrist).
An NHS sight (eye) test is free of charge if you are in one of the eligible groups and your sight test is considered clinically necessary. If the ophthalmic practitioner can’t see a clinical need then you’ll have to pay for the test privately. For more information take a look at free NHS sight tests and optical vouchers.
How can I tell if my child is having issues with their eyes?
Children often do not complain about their sight, but they may show signs of being unable to see properly such as:
If you think your child has any sort of sight problem, book and appointment at the opticians for further investigation. Children so not have to be able to read letters to have their eyes tested.
Children under 16 years of age or 16, 17 or 18 year olds in full time education are entitled to free NHS eye examinations.
You can find your local opticians by visiting NHS Choices.