Francisco Jurado, Optometrist and store director of Specsavers Ópticas in Torrevieja, Guardamar and La Zenia
How often should I have an eye test?
Many problems with the eyes have no symptoms, so you should have a check up with your optometrist every two years. More frequent checks are advised for the over 65s, or those with a family history of glaucoma or a condition such as diabetes, because they are more at risk of certain eye diseases.
Why is important to have one, even though my eyes feel fine?
There is a great deal of research done into eye diseases, with advances being made in treatments e.g. in macular degeneration. However, effective treatment relies on an early diagnosis, so it’s vital to have a regular eye test even if everything seems OK.
What is an eye test?
An eye test is a series of processes to check different aspects of your vision and should also include checks for common ocular diseases.
How does an optician check your vision?
The optometrist uses a hand-held instrument called a retinoscope, which bounces a light beam off the back of your eye. Different lenses focus the reflected light beam until steady, giving a close guide to the prescription you need.
The optometrist fine-tunes his/her findings by asking you to read a test chart through different strength lenses. The optometrist flips different lenses in front of your eyes that change how clearly you can see, until you have the clearest, sharpest image possible. The results of this procedure determine the strength of lens needed.
Red and green circles: red focuses behind the retina and green on the front of it, so depending on your answers, the optometrist can tell if you need a stronger or weaker lens.
You are also asked to say whether flashing lines are in line horizontally and vertically. This indicates whether your eyes are co-ordinated. The optometrist may also test your ability to focus at varying distances, to decide if you need different prescriptions for distance and reading, and will also conduct a series of tests to make sure the eyes are healthy. If necessary, the optician can refer you directly for further medical examination to your hospital or general practitioner.
There are six Specsavers Ópticas on the Costa Blanca. Find your nearest store and request an eye test at www.specsavers.es