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  • Writer's pictureOptician near Heathrow

Eyesight and driving safely

What impacts your eyesight while driving?

  • 1 in 5 drive with either poor eyesight or an uncorrected visual defect

  • 34% of drivers do not wear their glasses or lenses whilst driving

  • 38% of accidents happen of the drive to work

Our eyes are constantly stimulated when driving because they help us to gauge the road ahead. This includes any possible dangers, pedestrian movements, signposts, and also the information on our dashboard. Many factors play an important role in driving, such as glare, sight, weather, fatigue etc:

GLARE: Glare can come from many sources including low sunlight in the spring, to the reflection of bright light on wet roads, reflections off windows and even from objects around your car that catch the light. Read more on How glare can impact your eyesight while driving in our blog.

SIGHT: Safe eyesight for driving is imperative on the road. 90% of the information into our brains at the wheel passes through our eyes. Good visual health, and proper correction when needed, is essential for driving safely. As is having an up to date prescription.

WEATHER: Driving conditions alter dramatically depending on weather conditions. For example, your eyes may have to make an extra effort to try to maintain maximum visual comfort if there is sun, rain or fog. When the sun is low, weather conditions like snow can make glare a real issue. Keep your windscreen clear and clean and ask us about which lenses or lens coatings can help with the glare and sun.

FATIGUE: Sleep deprivation is also a common cause of bad driving. To function properly, the human body needs 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Getting less than this can result in chronic fatigue, which can mean you should not drive.

Other issues that can affect driving include having the wrong/out of date prescription, driving without glasses or contacts when you know you need them, tired eyes, eye conditions or impairment (such as glaucoma or cataracts) and smudged lenses or dirty windows and mirrors.

FACT: During the driving process, our visual system is constantly under pressure in high alert mode. Good vision is absolutely essential to visualise the route ahead and to anticipate possible events.

How can we help with your eyesight and driving safely?

Visual health has a direct impact on your driving ability, so you have a responsibility to maintain your visual health as a driver. You should have a regular eye exam at least once every 2 years, or more often depending on your needs. If you notice you have trouble seeing while you drive, experience blurriness or eye irritation, or if you are due for an annual eye exam, call us today.

We will be able to recommend the best course of action for you, depending on your lifestyle including glare and anti-reflection coatings which will aid driving during the daytime, polarised lenses or Transitions which are lenses that go dark in the car. We also offer a full range of sunglasses. Our proximity to Heathrow Airport, which brings us customers from far and wide.

Does your vision meet the driving standard, whether you drive a car or drive for a living?

Due to where we are situated, in the Heathrow area, we see lots of people who spend many hours driving, for example couriers, delivery vehicle drivers, taxi drivers, bus drivers, passenger carriers, and more.

If you drive for a living and need your HGV, PCO or taxi licence renewed , we can help with filling out forms for you. Please let us know when you book your appointment.

We can recommend the best lenses for your glasses to give you the clearest vision when you drive so your eyes don't get strained and tired. A lot of us find it difficult to drive at night in dim light and oncoming traffic , this is mostly due to the glare. We can offer you lenses to keep your eyes comfortable when driving at night in dim illumination with headlights.

On the other hand , driving when it is sunny also causes problems due to the reflections and bright light. You can have lenses that automatically go dark in the sun even behind the windscreen to help with the glare from the bright sun.

Contact us for an appointment for an eye test so we can make the appropriate recommendation to help you see clearly and comfortably when you drive.

Call 020 8759 9395 if you want to discuss eyesight and driving safely or any of our other services. Alternatively, you can book an eye exam appointment online.

Find us at 742 Bath Road, Cranford, Hounslow, London, TW5 9TY. Street parking on The Avenue, High Street, Berkeley Avenue or Waye Avenue. Car parks available at the Ibis Budget London Heathrow Central (TW5 9SX) and DoubleTree Hilton by Hilton London Heathrow Airport (TW5 9QE). Please check for parking conditions.


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