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6:00 AM 22nd December 2021
lifestyle

Expert Advice To Help US Stay Safe On The Roads

With people taking to the roads to drive home for Christmas with their families, it’s important we’re doing all we can to stay safe behind the wheel.

The low sun and darker days during this time of year mean we need to be extra vigilant – so it is vital our eyesight is up to scratch too. In fact, new research shows that almost half of drivers weren’t aware that it is illegal to drive without their prescribed distance glasses or contact lenses and a quarter have risked getting fined or banned by not wearing them. Shockingly, a third have also never had their sight tested for driving .

To highlight the importance of road safety, Specsavers is sharing its advice to ensure our eyes remain firmly on the road.

Giles Edmonds, Specsavers clinical services director, says:
‘While we all want to rush off to see our loved ones over Christmas, it is important we’re staying safe and having good eyesight is one of the most basic requirements of safe driving. It means drivers will be able to spot potential dangers, see pedestrians and other vehicles, read road signs and judge speed, distance and movement. Without this, there can be catastrophic consequences on the road – and even more so when changes to weather make driving conditions precarious, which isn’t unusual for this time of year.

‘While we want to encourage all drivers to have an up-to-date eye test to ensure that they can see clearly on the road, for those who do wear glasses, it is also important to ensure that their lenses are suitable for driving too.’


Low sun or a white Christmas?
Polarised lenses are a good option for driving in daylight as they eliminate glare from horizontal surfaces, such as roads, water and snow. They also offer 100% UV protection, improve contrast and help ease the strain on your eyes, so they are particularly good for driving in bright conditions. Polarising lenses can sometimes affect the viewing of LCD displays though, so that’s something to bear in mind when wearing them.

Astigmatism
If you have astigmatism, night driving can be especially difficult as the pupil dilates to let in more light, which can lead to vision looking even more blurred. Many people with astigmatism also have trouble with light reflections from cars and streetlamps, which can cause them to squint, making it even more difficult to concentrate on the road. While lens options such as an anti-glare treatment can help, for contact lens wearers with sizable astigmatism it is important to correct that by wearing toric contact lenses.

Think about lenses
Specs wearers may benefit from having their lenses coated with Specsavers UltraClear SuperClean – an anti-reflection and scratch-resistant treatment. It also has the added benefits of being water-repellent, smudge-resistant and anti-static. This means that lenses have less reflections and reduces dazzle caused by headlights and streetlamps, attract less dust, stay cleaner for longer and are easier to clean, which helps give clarity while driving day or night.

For those who wear varifocals, it may also be worth considering Specsavers SuperDrive varifocal lenses which have been specially designed with driving in mind. These lenses have a super wide distance and middle-distance zone, to help give you a wide view of what is ahead as well as dashboard and wing mirrors.

Regular eye appointments
It is so important to keep up regular eye tests – at least once every two years or more often if required by your optometrist. During your appointment you will be able to chat about your lifestyle with your optician to ensure you’re getting the correct lenses to suit your needs. However, if for any reason you are unable to make your appointment, please do let your local store know as they may be able to offer it to someone else who needs it.

For more information or to book a test visit www.specsavers.co.uk/glasses/glasses-lenses/anti-glare-driving-glasses-road-safety