Skip to content

Eye Test – What you need to know

Did you know that an Eye Test does more than just check your vision? It’s also an important health check!

Why is the health check so important?

During the Eye Test the Optician will assess the overall health of the eye. Remember the part of the test where they ask you to look up, down, right and left while they shine that bright light in your eye? Well this is part of the health check.

The combination of the slit lamp, a specially designed high powered lens and the light allows them to see in detail the lens, anterior chamber, vitreous and retina at the back of the eye.

Anatomy of the Eye

These health checks along with additional tests (such as a peripheral fields test) allow the Optician look for signs of cataracts, macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and more.

If left untreated many of the conditions could result in vision loss. In fact there are 2 million people in the UK living with vision loss, which is significant enough to have had a severe impact on their daily lives.
But around half of that sight loss is avoidable.

How often should I have an Eye Test?

Most people should get their eyes tested every 2 years, although some may require a test every year. This is usually if there is a family history of glaucoma or there the Optician wishes to monitor your vision more regularly. But whatever your normal recall is, if you feel there is an issue with your vision you should always get your eyes checked sooner.

NHS Tests and Private Tests, is there a difference between them?

In terms of the vision and health checks performed by the Optician there is absolutely no difference between an NHS Test and a Private Test.

How do I know if I qualify for an NHS test?

There are several reasons for a patient to qualify for an NHS Eye Test. These are:

  • Under 16
  • Aged 16-18 and in full time education
  • Over 60
  • Aged 40 or over with a family history of Glaucoma
  • You suffer from Glaucoma/Diabetes
  • You are registered blind/partially sighted

You/your partner receive:

  • Income support
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
  • Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
  • ESA
  • Tax Credit Exemption Certificate
  • HC2/3 Certificate
  • Universal Credit and meet the criteria

If you think you may qualify for an NHS Eye Test but aren’t sure you can always check with us and we’ll be happy to advise you.

Ready to book your appointment? Get in touch with us here.