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General Queries

What level of service can I expect from Optique Opticians?
At Optique Opticians we aim to provide the best possible level of service. We are able to offer a range of eye care options including spectacles, contact lenses and Laser Eye Correction. We will provide a one-to-one personalised service, identifying your needs and offering solutions.

Do Optique offer a fitting and aftercare service?
Yes. Call into Optique Opticians and adjustments to your spectacles can be carried out while you wait. No appointment is necessary.

Why is an eye examination so important?
Your eyes are precious and need to be taken care of. Regular eye examinations will ensure that both the health of your eyes and your vision can be closely monitored and any problems detected at an early stage.

How often should I have my eyes examined?
You should have an eye examination every 2 years and every 12 months if you have glaucoma or diabetes. Any old aged pensioners 70 or over are entitled to a free NHS eye test every 12 months.  This will ensure that both the health of your eyes and changes in vision can be monitored and any problems detected You may need to visit the Opticians more frequently, depending on the condition of your eyes, your age and your medical history. At each appointment your optometrist will advise you on when to return.

How often should I change my glasses?
You can change your glasses as often as you feel like it, there is no set timeframe. People will tend to change their glasses when their prescription changes and of course to change the style and look of their spectacles.

Children and glasses

How often should my child have their eyes tested?
You should follow the advice of your optometrist, as this will depend on the age and condition of your child’s eyes. However, as a general rule, children’s eyes should be tested every 6-12 months.

Does my child need to be able to read before they can have an eye examination?
No, this is a common misconception. Children can be examined at any age. Optometrists can use a variety of methods to check both the vision and health of your child’s eyes, even if the child is not old enough to communicate. As your child’s reading and communication skills develop, the eye examination will be adapted accordingly. By the time your child is 8 years old their eyes will be fully developed. It is important that any problems are detected before this stage.

How do I know if my child is having problems with their eyes?
As a baby, your child’s vision will undergo rapid changes – for example it is normal for their eyes to wander during the first four months. However, it is worth consulting your doctor if your baby suffers from persistent eye infections or their eyes do not appear to be working together perfectly (this may indicate a squint). Once your child reaches school age, problems may be indicated by an inability to recognise colours and shapes, a lack of interest or difficulty in reading, persistent headaches, blurred vision or squinting.

How will I know if my child has a squint?
Squints can be very difficult to see, especially in babies and young children. If you are concerned, you should take them to be seen by an Optometrist as soon as possible – the earlier a squint is detected the greater the chance of it being corrected.

How much will my child’s glasses cost?
Children 16 years or under receive a free eye examination in conjunction with the appropriate NHS voucher. At Optique Opticians, all of our children’s frames are free to children 16 years or under. In addition, we also stock a range of kid’s private frames at affordable prices, some of which include frames with memory metal. We also do free eye tests and glasses from the NHS for students in full time education under the age of 19.

Will my child always need glasses?
It depends on whether your child is long or short-sighted. If your child is long-sighted, they may only need glasses for a short while, in order to control the symptoms of the prescription. However, if your child is short-sighted it is likely that they will always need to wear glasses – their prescription will probably increase over time. In this case it is extremely likely that they will be able to wear Contact Lenses

If my husband and I wear glasses will our children also need glasses?
Not necessarily. However it is more likely as eye conditions can be inherited so it is advisable to have your children’s eyes examined on a regular basis (every 6-12 months).

If one of my children needs glasses will they all need them?
If a member of the immediate family wears glasses then we would advise you to have the whole family checked regularly by an optometrist.

How much can a baby see?
New-born babies can only see light and dark shapes. After about 4 weeks they will begin to see the outline of objects and by 8 weeks they will be aware of detail. Children’s eyes continue to develop until they are 8 years old.

Driving related questions

What is the legal vision requirement for driving?
You must be able to read a number plate from a distance of 20.5 metres (67 feet). Your field of vision must be 120 degrees wide and 20 degrees both above and below the horizontal. You must not drive if you have double vision. It is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that these requirements are met and to inform the DVLA if they are in doubt. Regular eye examinations are therefore recommended.

Which frames are best for driving?
You should choose frames that do not obscure your vision such as rimless styles or thin frames, with sides that are above eye level.

Which lenses are best for driving?
Plastic lenses are recommended, as they are both lighter and safer should you be involved in an accident. Anti-reflection coating reduces glare and reflections and is especially beneficial for night-time driving as it will reduce dazzle from headlights. We also deal in non-prescription night driving glasses to cut out glare of on coming car headlights.

Are tinted lenses suitable for driving?
Tinted lenses are suitable for daytime driving under normal weather conditions. However, it is not recommend that they be used either at night, or in poor driving conditions.

VDU Operators

I work on a VDU all day, which lenses should I choose?
Choose lenses with an anti-reflection coating – they will help to reduce the glare from your computer screen.

Should I wear my glasses when I use the VDU?
If you normally wear glasses all the time then your eyes will feel more comfortable if you wear them whilst operating the VDU. Inform your Optometrist that you are a VDU operator and they will be able to offer you advice.

How long should I use a VDU for?
It is important that you take regular breaks every twenty minutes. Try to relax your eyes by looking away from the screen and focusing on something in the distance.

How will I know that I need an eye examination if I use a VDU?
You should visit the Opticians if you suffer from persistent headaches, eyestrain, squinting, blurred vision, double vision, dry eyes, watery eyes or excessive blinking. You should ensure that you have an eye examination every 2 years – this is particularly important if you regularly use a VDU.

Why have my eyes been worse since I’ve been using a VDU?
Your eyes may have been worse because using a VDU is so visually demanding. The VDU will have not caused the condition, however the extra demands placed on your eyes will have caused the symptoms to show.

How can I stop my eyes from getting tired when using a VDU?
Make sure you take regular breaks; focus on something in the distance every 20 minutes. It is also essential that your workstation is set up correctly for your personal use. The screen should be 10-20 degrees below your eye level. Avoid glare by making sure that light sources are neither in front or behind your screen and ensure that both the brightness and contrast are set at a comfortable level.

Should my employer pay for my glasses now that I use a computer?
No. If you regularly use a VDU as part of your work then your employer must pay for regular eye examinations. Your employer is only obliged to pay for a pair of basic glasses if they are specifically for VDU use – if you use them at any other time, your employer does not have to pay for them.

Coatings

What is an anti-reflection coating?
An anti-reflection coating makes lenses virtually invisible. It reduces reflections and increases the amount of light transmitted through the lenses. The coating increases both contrast and clarity.

How do I know if I need an anti-reflection coating on my spectacles?
An anti-reflection coating reflection can benefit all spectacle wearers as it reduces unwanted reflections. However, the coating can be of particular benefit to you if you wear high-index lenses, are a VDU operator, regularly drive at night, or work in artificial lighting. Our trained staff can advise you further.

Why does my anti-reflection coating need cleaning so often?
An anti-reflection coating makes lenses virtually invisible therefore any marks will be very apparent. Make sure that you use a spray and cloth designed specifically to be used on lenses with an anti-reflection coating, as these won’t leave greasy marks.

Contact Lens questions

Will I always feel that I am wearing contact lenses?
You will be pleasantly surprised to discover how comfortable your contact lenses are. Eyes naturally react at first to new sensations, but most people quickly forget that they are wearing contact lenses.

Will other people see that I am wearing them?
NO. The ‘glassy-eye look’ is a thing of the past. Most wearers say that the major benefit of contact lenses is that they are invisible to others.

What if I lose a lens?
We keep some contact lenses in stock in our stores and others can be ordered very quickly. If you join the Optique Vision Plan some plans will supply your replacement lens at no charge.

Is there an age limit?
No. Many people from young children to the elderly can wear contact lenses very successfully. Whatever your age, our Optician will take account of your individual requirements.

What if I have an astigmatism?
Astigmatism should not prevent successful contact lens wear, as contact lenses fit close to the surface of the eye, most astigmatism is automatically corrected by hard or gas permeable lenses. Alternatively soft toric contact lenses will also correct the astigmatism.

Medical questions

How do I know if I have glaucoma?
It is unlikely that you will know if you have glaucoma, as the symptoms do not develop until the late stages of the disease. It is therefore very important to visit your optometrist on a regular basis, as they will be able to detect early signs of glaucoma. This is particularly important if there is a history of the disease in your family.

Can glaucoma be treated?
Treatment can control glaucoma, but not cure it. Glaucoma is usually treated with eye-drops, which need to be used daily. These will act to reduce the pressure of the fluid in the eye and prevent any further damage. Glaucoma sufferers, or those with a family history and over 40, are entitled to an annual eye examination paid for by the NHS.

Can only the elderly get Glaucoma?
No. Glaucoma affects about 2% of people over 40 years old. Some groups are more susceptible to the disease. These include anyone whose immediate family has a history of glaucoma, diabetics, Afro-Caribbean’s and the very short-sighted.

How do I know if I have a cataract?
Symptoms of a cataract are blurred vision, double vision (especially in one eye), colour changes (things may appear to have a yellow tinge) and glare problems caused by bright sunlight and direct lighting. Contact your optometrist if you are concerned, as they will be able to detect any problems.

Do I need stronger glasses if I have a cataract?
Changing to stronger lenses may improve the early changes caused by cataracts. However, to restore clear vision in the long-term, the cataract will need to be removed.

How do I know if I have conjunctivitis?
Your eyes may become itchy, pink and watery and your eyelids inflamed. You may also have a sticky discharge from your eyes. Conjunctivitis can potentially lead to complications so it is always best to visit your doctor or optometrist for treatment.

How infectious is conjunctivitis?
Conjunctivitis can be very infectious and easily spread. You should avoid touching your eyes and sharing towels or flannels.

How do I know if I have a retinal detachment?
You may suffer from a sudden loss of vision and notice an increase in the number of spots or floaters in your vision. You may also be aware of flashes of light or dark shadows across your vision. A retinal detachment requires urgent treatment and referral to casualty.

LEGAL DISCLAIMER

General
The information contained on this website is intended for information and reference purposes only. The medical information is general and not case specific. It should not be relied upon as a replacement for seeking advice from a registered Optometrist or General Medical Practitioner or other professional person. Optique Opticians Ltd do not accept liability whatsoever of any kind for the information contained in this website or for any assumed diagnosis or treatment made from the information. Please seek advice from your own optometrist if you have any problem with your eyes.