The importance of sight tests for those receiving care at home
By the time we are 65 years old, almost all of us will need to wear glasses or contact lenses. Poor vision is a significant factor in a great many falls for people aged over 60 and that is one of the reasons why sight tests for those receiving care at home is so important.
Having regular eye tests is really important since wearing the right glasses helps to improve balance, coordination and mobility. Sight tests can also pick up age-related changes, as well as eye conditions such as glaucoma and cataracts, as well as general health problems, including diabetes and high blood pressure. These conditions can be detected at an early stage, usually before you’ve even noticed that anything is wrong.
If you notice any changes in your vision, get it checked as soon as possible.
How to organise sight tests for those receiving care at home
Even if you think your sight is fine, you should have an eye test at least every 2 years. If you receive care at home or if you are aged over 60 you will most likely qualify for free NHS-funded eye tests. If you find it difficult to attend appointments, you could ask a Gardiner’s care worker to come with you. Another option is to request a home visit, your usual optician may offer this service. Opticians that offer home visits locally include:
Registering as blind or partially sighted
If you have serious sight loss, you can register as blind or partially sighted. This doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t see at all, you may still have some useful vision. Registering entitles you to certain benefits including a disabled person’s railcard, tax allowances, parking concessions, and a half-price TV licence. To register, ask your doctor or optician to refer you to an eye specialist, who will examine your eyes to see if you’re eligible.
Further advice about eyesight and sight test
- Practical help for those with sight loss – https://www.rnib.org.uk
- Practical help for those with sight loss – http://www.pocklington-trust.org.uk/
- Advice about eye health – http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/over60s/Pages/eyehealth.aspx
- More advice about eye health & sight tests – http://www.ageuk.org.uk/health-wellbeing/keeping-your-body-healthy/better-sight-/sight-tests/