Eye tests could help spot health problems

Dr Phil Earnshaw, chariman of the Wakefield Allliance Consortium.
Dr Phil Earnshaw, chariman of the Wakefield Allliance Consortium.
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NHS experts are urging people to have their eyes tested regularly to spot the signs of reduced vision and other health conditions.

Doctors hope to raise awareness of the need for check-ups during National Eye Health Week, which starts on Monday.

They are advising people to see an optician at least every two years because eye tests can detect underlying health problems like glaucoma, high blood pressure and diabetes.

Dr Phil Eanshaw, chairman of NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Many of these conditions, if found early, can be treated successfully, avoiding potential sight loss.

“Sight is the sense people fear losing the most and, as such, we hope to educate the public on the importance of eye care.

“Many people think that a sight test is just about checking whether your vision needs correcting.

“However, a sight test is a vital check on the health of the eyes.”

An event will be held on Wednesday at Fieldhead Hospital, on Ouchthorpe Lane, from 10am to 3pm, to raise awareness of the importance of eye care.

Experts will be on hand to give advice on eye health, and people will have the chance to test their hand-to-eye coordination using specialist equipment.

Linda Whelan, a sensory nurse specialist at South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I’d encourage anyone who wants to find out more about their eyesight to come down and get involved.

“We’ll even have some eye-shaped buns and cakes for people to try.”