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Home Breaking Staying Accident-Free on the Road: How to Drive Safely if You Wear Glasses

Staying Accident-Free on the Road: How to Drive Safely if You Wear Glasses

From helping you recognise objects nearby and at a distance to enabling you to differentiate between colours and traffic signals, eyesight is clearly crucial to driving. However, the “Is Your Vision Roadworthy?” campaign, led by motoring and eye care organisations in the UK, found that a majority of drivers fail to meet the basic eyesight standard for driving. Specifically, 85% of UK drivers failed the roadside vision screening due to an undiagnosed or untreated vision condition.

Using the prescribed eyewear, such as eyeglasses, can help reduce the risk of accidents and maintain overall road safety. Drivers who wear eyeglasses can hence adopt the following tips to address vision problems and meet the minimum eyesight standards to be behind the wheel.

Book an eye test

Even if you already wear glasses, your vision is subject to refractive changes that may require an updated prescription. Otherwise, glasses that don’t match your current visual acuity can distract you from the road and even cause headaches and eye strain while driving. 

An eye test from a qualified optometrist can help ensure that your eyesight still meets the driving eyesight rules in place, such as visual acuity of at least decimal 0.5. Routine examinations every one or two years also help with early detection and prevention of other eye conditions like cataracts and glaucoma, which can impair your driving and overall vision health.

Invest in prescription sunglasses

Although glasses aid in vision correction, they can still limit your field of view if you’re driving under the bright sunlight or the harsh glare of reflective surfaces. You may consider getting prescription sunglasses for both glare reduction and vision clarity. However, certain tinted lenses may restrict visibility and result in penalties and fines of up to £5,000.

Fortunately, the range of prescription sunglasses by the eyewear brand Ray-Ban can be customised to fit both your vision and road safety needs. Besides various frames like Wayfarer and Aviator to maximise coverage and protection, you can choose polarised lenses in recommended tints like grey and brown, as these block glare without distorting your colour perception.

Keep your eyewear clean 

Whether you wear prescription glasses or sunglasses, it is essential to keep them well-maintained by regularly cleaning the frames and lenses. Dirt, dust, and other debris can scratch the surface of the lenses, thereby compromising visual clarity and depth perception.

Aside from using a clean cloth to wipe off any potential visual obstruction, there are also special lens coatings that help minimise the build-up of dirt and contaminants on your lenses. Zeiss Vision Care launched the Zeiss DuraVision AntiVirus Platinum UV lens coating, which is not only anti-reflective but also has antiviral and antibacterial properties to improve overall lens care and hygiene.

Avoid driving in low light conditions

Lastly, having poor eyesight means you must be more mindful of driving conditions. Despite already using your prescribed eyewear, it’s best to reduce the risk of crashes and road accidents by avoiding low light conditions that further impair visual aspects like depth perception, colour perception, and peripheral vision. 

This means not only limiting nighttime driving but also steering clear of weather elements like fog, snow, sleet, and rain. If you still have to drive in said conditions, just make sure you’re familiar with the routes beforehand so you can better focus on the traffic and potential hazards ahead of you.

Overall, having to wear eyeglasses for vision correction doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice driving. However, you have to take the extra steps mentioned above to prioritise optimal vision health and road safety at all times.

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