Cheery news from my optician

Today I had my two-year optician check-up, and my eyes are still getting a little worse every year. Today’s optician was chattier than many and explained a bit more what was going on. After a lifetime of “better one or two” I do have some clue what the various bits of the test are for, but much is still a mystery. I also did an eye project back when I still did science, and my kindly local ophthalmologist took me through eye anatomy.

Today’s interesting info is that short-sightedness is caused by a stretched eyeball. There are ramifications for those of us who are very short-sighted – because the eyeball is already a little deformed, it’s less distance to travel for a detached retina. I was warned that if I ever have bright flashing lights before my eyes, or a curtain effect screening off portions of vision, I should make a visit to eye-casualty or an optician a priority. And apparently short-sighted people shouldn’t bunjee-jump.

Two weeks and many hundreds of pounds later, I will have two nice new pairs of glasses. The lovely new pair I got two years ago were not as long-lived as they need to be. The combination of thin wire frames and thick lenses meant the frames broke three times in two years and had to be posted off to a warehouse for resoldering.

And my prescription? Deteriorating very slowly – half a dioptre change in two years in both eyes taking me now to -8.5 and -8.75. Last time was the first time I had been over 8, a change I noticed because it took much longer to have frames made, and many internet specs shops no longer cater for that strength prescription. This time I noticed the difference because the optician added up the score and told me I only just failed to qualify for a free eye test next time. And apparently if my sight worsens further, the NHS will start to contribute towards the costs of specs. A whole £12 towards a £300 pair of specs. Mustn’t grumble.

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