AOP: Public urged to make eye health their new year’s resolution

4 January 2016
Source: The Association of Optometrists

The Association of Optometrists (AOP) is urging the public to make eye health their new year’s resolution as a seasonal reminder of the importance of regular sight tests. The call follows new research which reveals that only 35% of people are aware of optometrists’ ability to detect eye health problems1 – indicating a narrow understanding of the role optometrists play safeguarding the nation’s eye health. A further 11% of people surveyed have never been to see an optometrist or optician2, suggesting that large numbers of the population are currently overlooking their eye health.

Optometrist and AOP Clinical and Regulatory Officer, Henry Leonard, said: “We’re urging people not to overlook the value of sight and to make eye health their new year’s resolution. At this time of year when we’re all celebrating with friends and family, why not check that your loved ones can see as well as they should. Headaches, blurred vision and eye strain are all possible signs that a visit to your local optometrist may be in order. During a sight test, your optometrist will test your vision as well as the health of your eyes.”

Mr Leonard added: “Sight is the sense people fear losing the most. NHS-funded sight tests are available for children under 16 and those aged 60 or over, in addition to other key groups. As well as an eye health check, a sight test might detect signs of underlying general health conditions, such as diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure.”

The AOP is encouraging its members to support a nationwide poster campaign, calling on the public to make eye health their top priority for 2016. The Association recently produced a new animated video explaining what to expect from a sight test, as well as new patient information including a guide to who’s who in an optical practice and top tips for healthy eyes.

For more information about eye care and top tips for healthy eyes, see the AOP website http://www.aop.org.uk/patients

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