Who should have an eye test?

Regular sight tests are vitally important for both adults and children.

Sight tests for adults

It is recommended that most people should get their eyes tested every two years unless advised by an ophthalmic practitioner to have them tested more frequently.

Sight tests for children

Children rarely complain about their sight, but can show signs of problems with their vision. For example by:

  • sitting close to the TV
  • holding objects very close to their face
  • blinking a lot
  • rubbing their eyes
  • one eye turning in or out

Children should have their eyes tested regularly, normally every two years or more often if their ophthalmic practitioner advises. However, if you think your child has problems with their vision, take them to the ophthalmic practitioner for a sight test as soon as possible.

Increased risk of eye health problems

Anyone can develop problems with their sight, but some groups of people may have a higher risk. For example, people who:

  • are aged over 60
  • are from some ethnic groups, such as African-Caribbean or south Asian
  • have a learning disability
  • have a family history of eye disease

Regular sight tests are particularly important if you have an increased risk of eye problems.

For more information, see Why are sight tests important?

Read the answers to more questions about NHS services and treatments.

Further information:


Eye tests for adults

In this video, learn about the importance of eye tests and how to detect symptoms that could lead to problems with your eyesight.

Media last reviewed: 18/06/2015

Next review due: 18/06/2017

Page last reviewed: 29/10/2014

Next review due: 28/10/2016