It’s Eye Health Week, and you might not realise that 50% of sight loss is avoidable! Every seven minutes in the UK, someone is diagnosed with macular disease - severe, irreversible vision loss - but regular sight tests can pick up potential issues before they become serious.

It’s possible that, if your sight seems ok and you don’t feel as though you need glasses or contact lenses, you might not have had an eye test for some years. Getting your eyes tested, however, is vital in terms of checking on the overall health of the eyes and detecting eye conditions before they cause damage, enabling you to access treatment to successfully avoid potential sight loss. Did you know an eye test can also detect other health conditions, such as high blood pressure and diabetes?

Eye health organisation Your Vision Matters advises that everyone should have an eye test at least once every two years, even if your sight shows no signs of changing. Anyone with a family history of eye conditions such as glaucoma and cataracts is advised to see their optician more regularly, as well as people over 40 from Afro-Caribbean and Asian backgrounds.

The good news is that your eye health can be covered by your health insurance plan. Some plans offer cover if you are referred by your GP or optician to see a specialist such as an ophthalmologist (an eye doctor), whilst some plans also cover the costs of everyday healthcare such as visiting the optician.

The Axa Personal Health Plan, for example, includes dental and optical cover (when comparing health insurance quotes, you will find that these two often go hand in hand). Under this policy, you would receive back up to 80% of the cost of prescription glasses or lenses up to a maximum of £200 per year, as well as receiving £25 per year towards the cost of eye examinations.

With WPA’s Flexibile Health Elite policy, you can add benefits to cover some of the costs of optical treatment, prescription glasses and lenses and prescription safety spectacles, whilst with Your Choice’s cash benefits option, you can get cash back of between £50 and £200 per year for optical cover.

Optical treatment is one of many things you might not realise you can get cover for, so read our guide to the other surprising things covered by health insurance to find out more! And if you’d like to get health insurance quotes, remember that we partner with the UK’s leading health insurers to bring you the best prices for your own particular circumstances.

Eye Health Week runs until Sunday. For more information and to find an optician near you, visit the Your Vision Matters website.