Kids Clinics at Specsavers…a child’s view

Dear Mummy, you’ve been with Specsavers for over 10 years and have always loved their customer service, but recently they have gone above and beyond in your books. Little folk, like me, are now getting the VIP treatment from this high street optician in the form of dedicated kids clinics. Anything that makes me happy and keeps me healthy, makes you happy!

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Why children’s eyes deserve the VIP treatment at Specsavers

Mandeep Aujla, director at Specsavers Basingstoke and a mum herself to two children under the age of five says: ‘As a parent, I understand that our child’s health is of paramount importance. We have listened to our customers and will be improving our customer service for families by running a dedicated children’s clinic, one full day of the week on Sundays.’

The kids clinics check toddlers and school aged children’s eye health and sight. My folks have never noticed a problem with my eye-sight or anything that would lead them to be concerned about my eyes, but were intrigued by these FREE kid-friendly sessions and thought it was important to double-check to make sure everything was developing normally. It was also a great chance for me to get used to interacting with medical professionals as it is important for little ones to not be frightened when visiting doctors, dentists or opticians who are there to help.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Why is it important to get kids eyes checked?

Specsavers’ own research in 2014 revealed that one in five children under the age of 12 had never had an eye examination, yet there is good evidence that 15-20% of children have poor vision in one or both eyes. Detecting and managing vision problems while children are still young is key to maximising their education and minimising the chances of an eye or sight defect being carried into adulthood.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

The Kids Clinics offer parents the opportunity to book in tests for their children and ask the optician any questions they may have about their little one’s vision. We actually found the sessions really educational and…well….. fun! You see I got to take some tests, use some of the machines and I even enjoyed some sweets and played with some toys in the waiting room! Who’d thought an opticians could be kid friendly?!

Specsavers Kids Clinics

When we arrived at the Basingstoke store we were warmly welcomed by friendly staff, who directed their attentions to me, which made me feel very special. My folks answered some questions and my details were loaded onto their systems.

Did you know that children between 0-16 qualify for free eye tests on the NHS?

My folks didn’t. So a trip to the kids clinic doesn’t cost you anything for peace of mind.  All you need to do is bring in a birth certificate/ID, you may even qualify for an NHS optical voucher for glasses too!

Mandeep Aujla, director at Specsavers Basingstoke adds: ‘Children’s eyes can be tested at any age and we would recommend a visit before they start school and start learning to read. Also, if you spot any tell-tale signs that indicate some problems with a child’s eye sight such as watching a television at a close distance, holding a book close to the face when reading or looking at the pictures, or even looking cross-eyed, we suggest you pop in and book an appointment. Vision problems can be the reason a child does not perform well at school because they cannot see the board so the earlier a problem is detected the more chance there is of successful treatment.’

My pre-test experience

I was very excited about the pre-test before my full eye examination and a lovely optical assistant took me through to a small room to check my eyes where healthy. You can’t do this by looking someone straight in the eye and have to use a special machine called a Tonometer, which looks for medical conditions related to the eye.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

The machine blew a gentle puff of air onto the surface of each of my eyes to measure the internal pressure. This took me quite by surprise and even my mummy flinched but it was totally painless. This allowed the optometrist to assess my risk of developing glaucoma. It can also be used to estimate the degree of long or short sight present. I then had a photograph taken of the back of my eyes using digital retinal photography which helps with spotting any eye problems. This image was saved on my records to help them chart my eye health.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Meeting the friendly optometrist

I then met the optometrist, who had a little chat about my general eye health and lifestyle. She used a retinoscope, to measure my vision. She also asked me to read a test chart through different strength lenses. They had specifically designed kids tests and talked me through the whole process. I was allowed to hop down and sit on my mummy’s lap and took little breaks between the tests to play with my balloon and inspect the furniture. The atmosphere was very relaxed and informal and the optometrist was helpful and engaging.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

My optometrist used an ophthalmoscope – a specialist torch that shines brightly into the eye. This examines the retina at the back of the eye, my optic nerve and the retinal blood vessels- to make sure they are healthy. She also used a slit lamp, a powerful microscope, to examine the front surface of the eyes. This checks for abnormalities or scratches on your cornea, iris and lens and helpful for children who often get things in their eyes and prone to damaging them with chunky little fingers and sharp nails. The room got very dark while she was examining me and my mummy was very impressed with how I sat still and took direction from her.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Picking your lenses

After our eye examinations, we were given will be given a copy of our prescription. My folks also had their eyes tested at Specsavers too, so it was a real family affair. Specsavers friendly staff helped my folks choose new frames and advise on the different lens options. My mummy has been on their books for a long time and regularly gets check-ups done. She needed new lenses as her prescription had changed slightly and so did daddy. I on the other hand had no problems with my eye-sight and good eye health. So I patiently watched and waited while they picked out their frames. I couldn’t resist trying some glasses on as they were very stylish!

Specsavers Kids Clinics

There were plenty of frames to pick from with prices starting at under £50. My folks were both surprised with the range of designer and fashionable ranges! Daddy picked up some Hilfiger ones while my mummy opted for some retro Love Moschino ones.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

The assistant took careful measurements of their faces to make sure their glasses fit correctly. This is done by the use of Specsavers new tablet technology. Staff used Digital Precision Eyecare technology to calculate the important measurements needed to fit the lenses. Then the assistant sent their chosen frames, along with their measurements and lens selections, to the lab, where their glasses will be custom-made for them. A week later my folks returned to collect them and have the frames corrected on their faces.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Kids Offers

One offer that caught mummy’s eye (no pun intended) was two free pairs of glasses for child children. All glasses in their kids’ £64 and £85 ranges are FREE with an under-16s’ NHS optical voucher. Specsavers will also give you a second pair from the £64 or £85 ranges, FREE. Both pairs come with single-vision lenses with a scratch-resistant treatment and UV filter or you can choose to have tinted prescription lenses and UV filter free in your second pair. Remember, under-16s get a FREE NHS eye test.

Specsavers Kids Clinics

Specsavers also do screenings in schools!

Did you know that Specsavers has teamed up with Thomson Screening to deliver free vision-screening software to every primary and secondary school across the country?  They want every child to have the opportunity to learn, unhindered by problems with their eyesight.  If a child cannot see the board properly, or the words are blurred when they try to read, they will find it difficult to perform to their full potential. Using the SchoolScreenerEZ software designed to be operated by teachers, it enables them to carry out a three-minute preliminary test of each child’s eyes. Perfect for highlighting any issues that a parent might not pick up.

Good vision and eye health is vital during the school years, make sure you do the best you can to help little ones develop and get the best possible start at school, we are so lucky to have the opportunity for free eye tests and glasses for children in the UK. These kids clinic are a great idea and don’t cost a penny for children, so we’d recommend booking an appointment for peace of mind!

Love Bella x

Disclosure: We were invited to Basingstoke Specsavers to try out the kids clinic in order to write an honest review, my folks received complementary glasses.

Family Fever

Mummascribbles

Dear Bear and Beany

34 thoughts on “Kids Clinics at Specsavers…a child’s view

  1. These clinics are such a good idea to raise awareness of getting tested! I didn’t have my eyes tested until I was 17, thankfully I didn’t have any problems though!

  2. What a great review opportunity! We have a specsavers up where we live and my husband uses them, but myself and my kids go to our trusty independent opticians. Excellent service, always, there. That reminds me, I need to book appointments!

  3. Such a great post, I honestly think a lot of parents don’t think about taking their kids to the opticians. As I have worn glasses for years it was something I did automatically with my Daughter. But the VIP treatment sounds great as it can be scary going to the opticians x

  4. I’ve recently got glasses and probably should have got them much sooner. It’s very important to keep having your eyes checked! Great to hear that they do school visits now too.

  5. what a great idea, I was 13 before I had to wear glasses and they havent been off my face ever since!
    I would have taken my daughter to a shop like this, if i had one available.

  6. We love Specsavers and have always chosen them for our glasses! My daughter needs glasses for things like reading, the computer etc and its great that you get the two free pairs with them. Under the NHS thing as well for kids one of their pairs is registered so if it breaks or is lost they get a replacement, so we always make sure her favourite pair or the pair she takes to school are the ones that are registered just in case anything happens xx

  7. We recently took Elliot for his first eye test at Asda and while the optician was a very very nice Irish man, the Specsavers kids clinics sound so much more fun for little ones! I will definitely take him there next time 🙂 #triedtested

  8. This is fantastic, both Husband and myself have poor eyesight, so we’re paranoid the boys will suffer also. Gray is due to go with Daddy to his next app, but i think we’ll look into if our local specsavers does this! #SharingtheBlogLove

  9. Not until I became an adult did I go to specsavers. I use to go elsewhere as a child but I think it’s important for children to have a friendly environment and people who are patient and can work with children as well as the adults. x

  10. I have regular eye tests as I have quite bad eyesight, but I’m yet to take my little boy. We have a hospital appointment in a few weeks to look at his eyes to check that he hasn’t inherited my problems (unlikely as my husband has exactly the same problems as me!), but after that we’ll be taking him to the opticians regularly as well. It sounds like Specsavers are really great with kids – it can be quite an intimidating experience so it’s lovely when they’re understanding about that. Thanks so much for joining us again at #SharingtheBlogLove

  11. This is great! I has no idea they did clinics for kids or that it was free! Monkey has just started school and I’ve never got his eye sight tested. Mummy fail on my part I fear. Will be looking into this as we have a spec savers in our town so no excuse! Popping by #triedtested xx

  12. How wonderful that they’ve done everything they can to make a potentially scary experience exciting.
    Thanks for sharing on #TriedTested this week x

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