Do I need an eye test?

If you are having vision problems you need an eye test to ensure you don’t have an underlying eye condition, and to find out if you need glasses or contact lenses. If you already wear glasses or contact lenses an eye test will ensure you get the right prescription to enhance your vision.

Wearing the wrong prescription can cause unpleasant symptoms like headaches and can be dangerous in situations like driving a car.

As part of a routine eye test your optometrist will conduct a comprehensive examination of your vision and eye health. This is important for the early detection of eye conditions like cataracts, macular degeneration and glaucoma. Your optometrist will also look for signs of other medical conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.

The good news is most vision problems and many eye conditions can be corrected if detected and treated early.

How often do I need an eye test?

As a general rule, if you don’t have any symptoms (eg. Heachaches, dry or sore eyes, blurred vision) an eye test is recommended every two years. You may need to see an optometrist more regularly with age, or if you have a family history of conditions like diabetes or glaucoma.

Children who don’t have any symptoms should have an eye test before they start school, and annually after that or as recommended by their optometrist.

Common symptoms

If you experience any of the following symptoms it’s best to book an eye test as soon as possible:

• Blurred or fluctuating vision
• Clouded, distorted or dim vision
• Recurrent eye fatigue
• Difficulty focusing
• Dry or sore eyes
• Recurrent headaches or migraines
• Eye strain
• Seeing spots and floaters
• Scratchy, gritty eyes
• Sensitivity to glare
• Difficulty driving at night
• Frequent changes to prescriptions for glasses or contact lenses.

Eye conditions

Some of the common eye conditions your optometrist can detect include:

Macular degeneration
Diabetic retinopathy
Dry eyes
• Pterygium


Along with genetics, medical conditions and lifestyle, age is a risk factor for many common eye conditions. Many people start to experience changes to their vision from the age of 40.

Medical conditions

If you have diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, stroke or a family history of glaucoma you may need to have your eyes tested more regularly.

Speak to your Bupa optometrist for personalised advice on how often you need an eye test.