National Eye Health Week (19th to 25th September) was established to encourage more people to have regular sight tests to improve eye health in the UK and help save more people's sight.
This is a week when eye and sight charities, health professionals and organisations come together to help spread the word.
Ideally, people should have their eyes tested at least every two years (more frequently for some), but more than one in 10 of us have never even had an eye test.
What our eyes can reveal about our health
A basic eye test can help detect the early warning signs of some conditions like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and glaucoma. These can all potentially cause problems in the eyes that can lead to loss of vision, such as bleeding within the eye, lack of blood supply to the eye (ischaemia) and a build up of pressure in the eye.
How common is visual loss?
There are now 1.8 million people in the UK that are living with sight loss. For just over half of these people (53%), this sight loss may have been preventable with regular vision tests and early treatment.
Who can get an eye test?
Everyone can have an eye test, but some people do need to pay. However, a large proportion of the UK population does qualify for free sight tests. Check with your local optician and they can let you know if you qualify.
Remember for the very frail, elderly or house-bound, they may be eligible to have a domiciliary sight test at home. It is so important for these individuals to maintain good eye sight to help maintain independence.
Remember, get your eyes checked - it may just save your sight.