What is an eye examination?
An eye examination includes:
- Discussion of the reasons for your visit, and any problems with your eyes and vision
- Recording of medical, ocular and family history
- External and internal examination of the eyes with specialist equipment
- Refraction: Process of determining if the eyes are long-sighted, short-sighted, astigmatic or presbyopic and of determining the need for corrective lenses (i.e. prescription) to give optimum vision
Other examinations which may be necessary include:
- Colour vision
- Visual fields
- Intra ocular pressure
- Muscle balance
How do I know when I should come for an eye test?
Unless otherwise advised, you should have an eye examination every two years by a qualified optometrist. It may be necessary to have them more frequently depending on your age and medical or eye history. Your optometrist will inform you how regularly you should be seen and we will write to you to remind you when it is time for you to come and see us.
It is, therefore, important that you inform us if you change your address or phone number.
Will I need glasses every time I visit the opticians?
One of the purposes of an eye examination is to ensure that your vision is the best that it can be. If your eyes change every year then upgrading the lenses in your glasses will give you improved sight. If your eyes remain stable, then upgrading your glasses is not necessary.
Do be aware that everyone’s eye changes – usually as a normal process of growing and/or aging; however, eye examinations can provide early signs of certain health abnormalities.
What happens if I break my glasses?
It is always useful to have two pairs of glasses just in case one breaks. If you do not have a spare pair, or if your glasses break, come on in and we can order a second pair for you.
Most people will have two pairs, one that is perhaps cosmetically “enhanced” and the second, perhaps for the garden, the shed or generally when at home.
Can I wear contact lenses?
Contact lenses are a very convenient means of correcting your vision, and with advances in technology and design, they can be worn by almost anyone.
They can be worn on a daily basis or just for particular hobbies or interests that you may have.
A contact lens ‘assessment, teach and trial’ will confirm which lenses would be best suited to you and your needs.
Do I have to pay for my eye test?
Certain groups of people are entitled to an NHS eye examination. If you fall in to one of these categories, your eye examination is paid for by the NHS. As a private patient, you will need to pay for your examination. For further information on whether you are entitled to an NHS eye examination, please visit http://www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/Healthcosts/Pages/Eyecarecosts.aspx
Should I wear sunglasses?
Yes. The sun, however strong or weak, has harmful UVA, UVB and UVC rays that can gradually cause damage to your eyes. Conditions such as pterygium, cataract and age-related macular degeneration can develop quicker if sunglasses are not regularly used.
Please be aware that not all sunglasses have UV protection – just because the lenses are dark, does not mean they have UV protection. Dark lenses without UV protection can cause more harm than good.
I am diabetic. How often should I have an eye examination?
Diabetes can affect your eyes; yearly eye examinations are important if you have diabetes.