This week we’re supporting National Eye Health Week, which aims to raise awareness of why eye tests are so important.
Having an eye test isn’t just about checking your vision. It is also an important check of the health of your eyes and any early signs of eye conditions, such as glaucoma. Even conditions such as diabetes or hypertension can be detected in an eye test.
Here in Southampton we have a higher than average rate of preventable sight loss. Sight loss can have a huge impact on someone’s life, such as loss of independence, increased risk of falls and mental health issues. But sight loss can be avoided in many cases by having regular eye tests, as early detection and timely treatment can often prevent progression of eye disease.
In Southampton we also have a Minor Eye Conditions Service, which is now available in a number of opticians across the city. This means that if you have an eye problem that isn’t an emergency, such as sore eyes, red eyes or visual disturbance, you may be able to visit a local optician for assessment and treatment with the Minor Eye Conditions Service. Find out more about the service and where it is available.
- Unless advised otherwise, eye sight and health should be checked every two years. Diabetics should have annual retinal screening from the age of 12.
- Stopping smoking, reducing alcohol intake and a healthy diet are important for eye health.
- You may be eligible for a free eye test depending on circumstances, pre-existing conditions and/or family history.
- Wear sunglasses - UV exposure can cause cataracts, cancers and macular degeneration.
- If you work at a computer make sure you take regular breaks from the screen. Try looking away from your screen every 20 minutes at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.