Older people in Northamptonshire urged to get eye test to help prevent falls

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Eye health professionals in Northamptonshire are calling for older people to have regular sight tests to help prevent falls.

The Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire Local Eye Health Network (LEHN), which is part of NHS England, today said that regular eye tests would not only prevent falls, but can also improve a person’s quality of life and peace of mind.

Tristan McMullan, chairman of the Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Northamptonshire LEHN, said: “Anyone can have a fall, but older people are more vulnerable and likely to fall, especially if they have a long-term health condition and poor eye sight.

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“Most falls don't result in serious injury. However, there's always a risk that a fall could lead to broken bones, and it can cause the person to lose confidence, become withdrawn and feel as if they've lost their independence.”

He added: “Going for regular sight tests and wearing the right glasses will not only improve balance, co-ordination and mobility but will also help to maintain general eye health. All of which is particularly important during the winter months, when people are susceptible to falls due to ice or snow anyway.

“Sight tests are free and accessible to all people aged 60 and over and we would urge them to have regular tests to check that their eyes are healthy or that their prescription is up to date.”