Eye conditions can often go unnoticed as we don’t always experience symptoms until an eye condition is advanced. It’s important to attend regular eye examinations, where any early signs of an eye condition can be detected and lenses prescribed as early as possible.
Although an essential investment, eye tests and prescription lenses don’t come cheap! Worse still, if you were to accidently break or misplace your glasses, you could face the added expense of a replacement pair if you’re uninsured.
The cost of an eye test:
- A visit to a High Street opticians will cost you on average between £20 and £30.
- An NHS sight test is free – but only if this has been recommended by an ophthalmic practitioner.
- Children, full-time students under 18, over 60s and other specific groups of people are also eligible for free eye examinations. Check your eligibility then ask your local optician for a GOS1 form.
- The cost of glasses:
- During an eye test, an optometrist evaluates the limits of your vision, then if required, you will be prescribed lenses.
- In most High Street opticians, you’ll find the cost of lenses and frames combined.
- There should be frames to suit all tastes and pockets – which include the cost of standard vision scratch-free lenses.
- Budget frames can cost around £25, designer frames are priced on average from £45 to £169, and titanium or rimless glasses will typically set you back around £169.
The cost of contact lenses
- An alternative to glasses, there are various types of contact lenses to suit individual needs, from daily disposable to monthly reusable lenses.
- You could expect to pay from £5 up to £16 for a month’s supply of contact lenses.
- Being without glasses when you’ve been prescribed lenses can result in limited vision, so if you break or misplace them, it’s imperative to have them repaired or replaced as quickly as possible.
- When purchasing your prescription glasses, you’ll most likely be offered breakage protection which could offer you a free or discounted repair or replacement.
- There are various price bands for protection – consult your optician’s price range for more information.
How often should I visit an optician?
- It’s recommended that adults visit the optician for an eye test every two years, or more if advised to do so.
- For children under 16 and those over 70 years, an eye test is recommended annually.
Eyesight and the road:
- You should always wear your prescribed contact lenses or glasses when driving.
- According to Specsavers, as many as 3.5 million people in the UK could be driving with eyesight that does not meet legal requirements.
- UK law states drivers must be able to read – with lenses if required – a car number plate from 20 meters in clear conditions. If you don’t meet UK standards of vision for driving, you could be prosecuted.
According to the College of Optometrists in Vision Development (COVD), 80% of children’s learning is achieved through their eyes, so eye tests are important at an early age as healthy vision is essential for development.
Regular check-ups are equally as important for adults, too. With age, our eyes naturally become more susceptible to problems, so don’t wait for symptoms to book an eye examination!