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Eye advice - my opticians are useless

(11 Posts)
2ndSopranosRule Thu 11-Feb-16 15:30:22

I'm short sighted. Not dramatically so (-3.50) but I have terrible binocular vision, an astigmatism that seems to worsen at every test (again it's not dramatic) and a squint.

I wear either glasses or contacts all the time. Prefer contacts. I did try toric lenses but they'd got my prescription wrong so I rejected them. Didn't feel I could see well enough to drive.

The squint in my right eye was corrected at 18 months; the squint in my left I eye was corrected at the age of 7 (nearly 30 years ago). When I'm tired, I really struggle to focus and my left eye crosses. When it's really bad I cannot do anything close up at all.

For some reason, for the past six months I can't seem to get the prescription correct in my left eye, particularly with contacts. I've had two eye tests and umpteen lens checks. I did have a problem with dry patches on my cornea which apparently cleared up using drops. Also changed my lens type and they feel tons better but I just cannot put my finger on why my vision feels wrong. But it feels wrong!

I go to Specsavers because it's cheap but I'm wondering if I should be trying an independent optician? The only other one that's reasonably local recently messed up my dad's prescription so I'm not sure about them either!

Or, would it be worth me trying to get seen by the orthoptics people at our NHS Community Eye Service? I did mention my squint years ago when dd1 was under them and they did mention adult services, but I have no idea how to access them! GP?

2ndSopranosRule Thu 11-Feb-16 15:31:00

To add: Specsavers are adamant that my squint won't be causing problems and nothing can be done anyway as it might make it worse.

CMOTDibbler Thu 11-Feb-16 15:50:54

I'm a bit more short sighted than you, have astigmatisms, and squint (my surgery was at 13 and 18).

I think if you aren't wearing toric lenses then thats not going to help, and although contacts are easier to control a squint with, it sounds like you could really do with prisms to help.

In my very extensive experience, not all opticians get squint at all, and some are outright rubbish at it. So I'd go to another opticians.

I'm now old enough to need varifocals, and have different prisms for near and far, so its really interesting!

barleysugar Thu 11-Feb-16 16:02:32

No harm in asking your GP to refer you to the Orthoptist, opticians have to refer via them anyway- cut out the middle man!

Mention that you have double vision, or the gp will probably just say go see an Optician!

Double vision is like the code word!

AttilaTheMeerkat Thu 11-Feb-16 16:04:46

I would have a chat with the GP and see if you can be referred to the people you write of or even a hospital like Moorfields.

maggiso Thu 11-Feb-16 17:35:19

Agree with Attila. Orthoptic services for adults are slightly different from area to area but are more normally available within specialised hospital eye clinics. Binocular vision can change with age so seeing an orthoptist is a sensible starting point. The ideal might be to find a good optometrist who is confident with binocular vision difficulties, and toric contact lenses. Ask around perhaps? Prisms cannot usually be put on contact lenses- only spectacles.

Footle Thu 11-Feb-16 19:10:49

Have you had your blood sugar checked recently ? Developing diabetes can mess up your vision and make it inconsistent from one test to another.

2ndSopranosRule Fri 12-Feb-16 08:36:15

Thanks for the replies!

I have prisms on in my glasses and they did try me on toric lenses. The problem was that the prescription was completely and utterly wrong (they'd taken the power in the wrong direction...) and as soon as I put them in I realised I couldn't see. Unfortunately, Specsavers interpreted that as "not comfortable with toric lenses" and now I'm "not allowed" to try again hmm

Footle interesting. I did have a blood test recently but whether or not they tested blood sugar I'm not sure.

I'm going to the GP next week to discuss issues, er, 'down below' so I may as well tackle the other end while I'm there!

2ndSopranosRule Fri 12-Feb-16 08:37:52

Attila nowhere near Moorfields but Manchester Eye Hospital is local (ish)

Karoleann Fri 12-Feb-16 09:05:34

Hi Optom here:

You can't put prisms in contacts, so that could be the reason that you're struggling more with contact lenses.

One option would be to have a separate pair of glasses that you wear over your contact lenses which have prisms in them and you can use these just for intensive close work (they could have the astigmatic prescription in them too).

There are also many different types of toric contact lenses, often they are weighted in different ways (they need to be weighted so they sit in the correct orientation to correct your astigmatism). Often if one type of toric doesn't suit, another type may, so it is worth exploring different options.

How old are you? Another reason for the problem may be that you're becoming presbyopic (this tends to only happen over the age of 40). If this is the case, varifocal glasses will help.

It also could be that you have developed a very mild form of keratoconus, which would explain the increasing astigmatism. This is more likely if your astigmatic prescription is over -2.50DC.

Anyway, all the above things are not that complicated to sort out or diagnose. But your g.p won't really be able to help with any of them. Accessing adult orthoptic services is currently a nightmare and they are really restricting access to squint surgery, so I would go down the Optician route first.

I would go and get a second opinion. Which area do you live in? I can maybe suggest someone to go and see.

2ndSopranosRule Fri 12-Feb-16 09:09:37

Hi smile

I'm nearly 37 and varifocals were actually mentioned a couple of years ago...

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