Glasgow Opticians are professionals who are qualified to work as optometrists or dispensing opticians. Dispensing opticians must be registered with the General Optical Council (GOC) and are qualified to provide advice on lenses and frames required to fit an optical prescription. An optometrist is the person who carries out eye tests. Optometrists are also registered members of the GOC. They qualify after a four year degree course, and there are now around 12,000 optometrists working in the UK.
Whether you need sunglasses, designer frames, prescription glasses, contact lenses or a pair of reading glasses, all of these are available at opticians throughout the country. Eye tests can be arranged at any independent Glasgow opticians or through a national chain of opticians. Some big retail chains and supermarkets also provide optical services.
Every man woman and child needs to have regular eye tests, usually every two years. Someone with a medical condition or rapid deterioration of eyesight could require more frequent testing. Eye tests are carried out by an optometrist who can determine whether or not you need to wear glasses or contact lenses and, if so, will measure the exact level of your vision. Eye tests enable an optometrist to examine each eye for problems with long sight or short site, and to look for possible astigmatism. During an eye test an optometrist also examines both eyes for signs of disease, injuries or eye conditions you may not be aware you have. Eye tests are designed to find signs of glaucoma and macular degeneration, and will also detect diabetes.
Anyone over the age of 40 is tested for reading different sizes of print, in order to determine whether glasses are needed for reading. If you require glasses or contact lenses for the first time, and when your eyesight has changed since your previous eye test, you will be informed of this and issued with a prescription. Any dispensing optician can advise you on the type of prescription glasses you need, and the sort of lenses that will correct your eyesight.
Help From the NHS
Normally there is a charge for an adult eye test. The NHS pays for eye testing of children under 16 years of age, also for anyone up to the age of 18 in full-time education, and for people over the age of 60. NHS patients with certain medical conditions get free eye tests. People in receipt of state benefits, or on a low income, can apply for a certificate that will entitle them to have a free eye test.
Some people also qualify for optical vouchers issued by the NHS, which reduces the cost of buying a new pair of glasses or lenses. Opticians can claim back from the NHS the amount paid with an official optical voucher.
Types of Lens and Choice of Frames
Following an eye test, prescription glasses might be needed to correct some fault or to improve either your distance vision or your close-up vision. Anyone who requires more than one fault to be corrected can ask an optician for two pairs of glasses, or request one pair of glasses fitted with bifocal or varifocal lenses. Prescription glasses are also available with lenses that automatically darken when the sun is bright and clear when the light is dull. These are a good option for driving and general outdoor use, although some people prefer to choose tinted prescription sunglasses with UV protection. Opticians recommend lenses to be coated with an extra protective layer that will prevent scratching and damage to the surface. This is usually an optional extra.
Whatever type of lens you need to correct your vision, a dispensing optician will help you find the best frames to suit your face, that will feel comfortable and match your style. Most Glasgow opticians offer you the choice of selecting designer frames for your prescription glasses or of choosing your frames from a standard range. These can be made from extra strong, light or thin materials. A budget range will give you a much narrower choice of frames. Designer frames are more expensive because they come with a well-known design brand label. They are both fashionable and of high quality. Some designer glasses are made with very fine frames, and some are designed to be frameless.
Glasgow Opticians are also qualified to offer advice about contact lenses, and will make sure that you get the best type for your eyes and their condition. Gas permeable contact lenses are rigid and provide very clear vision. Soft lenses are flexible and easy to use. All contact lenses are individually designed to fit close against the cornea. Prescription lenses help to improve nearsighted or farsighted vision, or they can be bifocal. They can also be made to correct astigmatism.
Contact lenses are either disposable or replaceable. Those that are not disposable must be removed and soaked clean each night, unless you ask for lenses designed for extended wear. When protection is needed against strong sunlight, contact lenses can be made to inhibit the amount of UV exposure. Contact lenses can also be customized to enhance or change eye colour or create other cosmetic effects.
In addition to selling prescription sunglasses, opticians can also offer a range of sunglasses for customers who do not normally wear glasses and have no eyesight problems. Sunglasses may also be top designer brands, but they are not just fashion accessories. Those available from opticians provide will proper UV protection for the eyes and filter out harmful ultra violet rays. An optician should ask if you require sunglasses for driving, for sports or for medical reasons, and then will be able to advise you on the best type of lens for your needs. Wraparound sunglasses would be recommended for use in any sports where peripheral vision is important and where eyes need extra protection.
Sunglasses with different colours of lens can be worn in a variety of light conditions. Winter sports and summer activities require lighter or darker lenses. Copper coloured lenses are most effective for blocking out strong sunlight when driving. Designer sunglasses come in a range of distinctive styles and come with scratch-resistant surfaces. Sunglasses should always be tried on at the opticians, not just to see which style suits you best, but also to ensure they fit well and will not fall off or pinch the face.
Glasgow Opticians can be relied on to provide thorough eye tests and assist in selecting the best frames and type of lenses you require to improve your vision. If you qualify for an optical voucher, the NHS can help you to make your purchase, and you may also get a free eye test.