Click & Collect

Can I pay the full price of the frame online rather than just the £10 reservation fee?

No. Our ‘Click & Collect’ system is designed to allow you to reserve one or more frames that you’d like to try on in branch for a £10 fee.

I’ve chosen a frame and branch but have decided on a different branch, what do I do?

Contact us on [email protected] as soon as you can. We’ll arrange for a frame to be sent to the new branch. Once it’s there, we’ll get in touch and let you know.

Can I ‘transfer’ my reservation fee to another frame I see in the branch if I don’t like the one I’ve chosen?

Yes of course you can.

If I can’t get into the branch for any reason, how long will you keep my frames?

We’ll keep your frames for one week following receipt at the branch. If we have not heard from you, the frame will be returned and we will refund your debit/credit card.

What if I change my mind before the frames arrive at the branch?

That’s not a problem. Email us at [email protected] and confirm that you’d like to cancel your order. We’ll then arrange for your debit/credit card to be refunded.

Can I have plain lenses put in my frames if I don’t need a prescription?

Yes, we can supply them with plano lenses for you, there will be an additional cost for these lenses. Our staff will be happy to explain this in more detail when you visit the branch.

Are the prices shown online for complete glasses?

No, the prices shown are for just the frames. There will be an additional cost for your lenses based on your prescription. Our staff will be happy to explain this in more detail when you visit the branch.

Can I buy just the frames?

No, we can only supply these frames when purchased as a complete pair of glasses.

How long does it take for the frames to get to the branch I’ve chosen?

We will aim to get your frame to your chosen branch within two to three working days. We will contact you as soon as they arrive so please wait for us to get in touch. If you have arranged an eye test as well as reserve a frame, we’ll make sure your frame is at the branch on your eye test appointment date.

Can I reserve more than one frame?

Yes of course. You just need to bear in mind that the reservation fee is paid on a per frame basis. So if you reserve five frames, the total amount payable will be £50. The maximum number of frames you can reserve in a single transaction is ten.

If I don’t want the frames, is the £10 fee refundable?

Yes completely. However we can only refund your credit/debit card, we will not be able to refund you in cash at the branch. Once we receive confirmation from the branch of your cancellation, you should have your reservation fee refunded within five working days.

Contact Lenses

How much are gas permeable contact lenses?

How much gas permeable contact lenses cost will depend on your prescription and the brand you choose. If you are not sure if gas permeable lenses are right for you, contact your optician.

Gas permeable contact lenses are rigid lenses that transmit oxygen to the eye. Gas permeable lenses are also known as:

  • GP lenses
  • RGP lenses
  • Oxygen permeable lenses

While all these are rigid lenses, they must not be confused with the old-fashioned hard contact lenses, which are now hardly ever used.

Gas permeable contact lenses let in oxygen, which is essential to eye health and means they can be worn when doing sports and other activities.

One of the major benefits of gas permeable contact lenses is that it is possible to have multiple prescriptions, meaning they are ideal if you have the following eye issues:

  • Astigmatism
  • Eye conditions that cause the eye to be irregular in shape
  • Wearers of soft contact lenses who don’t find their vision sharp enough
  • Presbyopia

Gas permeable contact lenses do tend to be more durable and can usually be worn for longer periods of time than soft contacts. It is common for them to be worn daily and only need to be replaced every six to twelve months. Some people who switch from soft to gas permeable contact lenses, also find their vision is sharper when they do.

Disadvantages include:

  • They can take a while for the wearer to adjust to them
  • As gas permeable contact lenses are designed to move on the eye when the wearer blinks, this does mean there is a higher risk (compared with soft lenses) of dust and debris getting in under the lens
  • They require a higher level of care than soft lenses

If you find that rigid gas permeable contact lenses are not right for you, there are hybrid lenses also available, which are fitted with both gas permeable and soft lens material.

If you want to speak to your optician regarding gas permeable contact lenses, please contact your nearest Scrivens branch today.

How much do multifocal contact lenses cost?

How much multifocal contact lenses cost depends on your prescription and the brand you choose. If you are unsure whether multifocal contacts lenses are right for you, contact your optician.

Multifocal contact lenses have multiple prescriptions all in one lens. Usually, there is a prescription for things close up, one intermediate range and one for long distance. You would tend to need multifocal contact lenses to help correct:

  • Presbyopia
  • Long-sightedness
  • Short-sightedness

Due to the fact there are multiple prescriptions, multifocal contact lenses can cost more than ordinary lenses. Multifocal contact lenses tend to have a gradual transition, unlike bifocal contact lenses, which have a sharper edge.

There are two different types of multifocal lenses:

  • Soft lenses
  • Rigid gas permeable lenses

They also come in two main types of designs. The most common is a set of concentric circles of different prescriptions for the different viewing distances. The second is a blended design; this type of lens keeps the near and distance prescriptions close to the centre of the eye.

Multifocal contact lenses have many advantages such as:

  • A gradual switch between prescriptions, which makes it less abrupt
  • Improved visual acuity for the range of distances needed
  • Able to see in most conditions
  • No need for extra eyewear

While there are many advantages to multifocal lenses, they are not right for everyone. Disadvantages include:

  • The different viewing experience can make it more difficult to adjust
  • During the adjustment period, night time glare, hazy or shadowy vision can be an issue
  • Due to their complexity, multifocal contact lenses are more expensive


If you want to speak to your optician regarding multifocal contact lenses, please contact your nearest Scrivens branch today.

How much do hybrid contact lenses cost?

How much hybrid contact lenses cost will vary, depending on your prescription and your chosen brand. Your optician can help you find the right hybrid content lenses for your needs.

Hybrid contact lenses are large diameter lenses that have a rigid oxygen permeable centre with a peripheral zone made of soft or silicone hydrogel material. The benefits of having a lens that is made out of two materials are that you have the best of both worlds.

Hybrid contact lenses are used to correct a number of sight issues such as:

  • Long sightedness
  • Short sightedness
  • Astigmatism
  • Keratoconus

Hybrid contacts for keratoconus have a special design that allows the central GP zone of the lens to vault over the irregularly shaped cornea. If you have mild to moderate keratoconus, it may be possible to get specially made-to-order soft lenses, which can be more comfortable than hybrid contact lenses. However, these do come at an extra cost.

While Hybrid contact lenses can be more expensive than soft contact lenses, they do have many benefits including:

  • Vision should not shift or blur
  • Keeps the lens stable in the eye
  • More comfortable than hard and ridged lenses
  • Less likely to pop out of the eye

If you have any questions or think hybrid lenses are right for you, please contact your nearest Scrivens branch and speak to an optician today.

How much are astigmatism contact lenses?

How much astigmatism contact lenses cost will depend on your prescription and your chosen brand. Your optician is best placed to help you find the right astigmatism contact lenses for your needs.

Astigmatism is a common eye condition that occurs in the cornea or lens when they are not a perfectly curved shape. Causing blurred or distorted vision, most people who wear glasses have a degree of astigmatism.

Most astigmatism contacts lenses are soft lenses, often known as ‘toric contact lenses.’ These differ from regular spherical lenses in two ways:

  • Astigmatism contact lenses can correct near-sightedness or far-sightedness in the different meridians of the lens. Meridians are imagery lines which pass through the centre of the pupil when viewing the eye head on. They are used to describe the shape of the corrective lenses.
  • Astigmatism contact lenses are specially designed so the lens can rotate to the proper orientation on the cornea. This means that the meridians can align in the right way for clear vision.

Every eye with astigmatism is unique; this can make fitting astigmatism contact lenses more difficult and takes more expertise than fitting ordinary soft contact lenses. They are also more complex in design. This can mean that astigmatism contact lenses tend to cost more than a regular contact lens exam and fitting.

Some Scrivens Branches offer Dreamvision contact lenses, which can be used for astigmatism. Dreamvision lenses are unique in the way that they are worn at night and removed in the morning to give clear vision throughout the day, without the need for glasses or contact lenses. They work by moulding the cornea in order to temporarily correct or reduce astigmatism.

If you have any questions or think that astigmatism are right for you, please contact your nearest Scrivens branch and speak to an optician today.

How long can you keep contact lenses in your eyes?

Generally, it is recommended that you should wear your contact lenses for a maximum of 10-12 hours per day, for up to five days a week. However, to an extent, this does depend on the characteristics of your eyes and the type of lenses that you have.

One of our highly qualified opticians will be able to discuss with you what is best for your individual needs. If you wear your contact lenses for longer that the recommended time, your eyes can become uncomfortable, red and they may even get infected.

It is recommended that you wear your glasses a couple of days a week to ensure your eyes receive enough oxygen to stay healthy. It is possible to have extended wear lenses which can be worn during the day and when you are asleep for up to a week.

Recommendations for how long you should wear your contact lenses can usually be found on the packaging. Although it is best to check with your optician, as they are in the best position to advise you based on your individual circumstances.

If your contact lenses start to feel uncomfortable, you need to take them out as soon as possible, give them a thorough clean and replace them. If you still find them uncomfortable to wear after cleaning, it is best to visit your optician as soon as possible and have your eyes examined, just in case.

It is always recommended to wash your hands when you handle your contact lenses and always clean them in the solution given, never in water.

I have worn contact lenses before but did not get on with them. Would I be able to try them again?

New lens designs and materials mean that contact lenses are now more comfortable than ever and provide exceptional vision. Many people returning to contact lens wear have found that they no longer have to compromise.

I have dry eyes. Will I be able to wear contact lenses?

New moisture rich lens materials mean that even people with drier eyes can wear contact lenses successfully.

Can contact lenses get lost in the eye?

Contact lenses float on the front surface of the eye and cannot get lost behind the eye.

How do you put contact lenses in and take them out?

If it’s your first time putting contact lenses in, the idea of putting something on your eye might make you feel a little squeamish. But there’s absolutely nothing to worry about, contact lenses are easy to apply and very comfortable.

It may take you a little while to get used to putting them in, but after some practice, and with the help of our handy guide, you’ll have no problem putting contact lenses in at all.

Here’s our guide to applying contact lenses:

Step 1.

Wash your hands.

This is very important to remember as any dust particles, germs or makeup on your finger will irritate your eyes and make the whole experience very uncomfortable.  Try to use soap that is fragrance free and one that is not too heavy on moisturisers as these ingredients could also irritate your eyes.

Dry your hands thoroughly, and you’re ready to start putting your contact lenses in.

Step 2.

Always start with the same eye.

Contact lenses are designed to fit each eye individually. You can’t swap them around as they simply won’t fit properly so it’s a good idea to start with the same eye every time. This is to help you make sure you put the correct contact lens in each eye.

If you are right handed, always start with your right eye. If you’re left handed, start with your left eye.

Step 3.

Get your contact lens ready.

Open the packet and scoop out the lens by sliding it up the ramp and out with your index finger. Look at the contact lens and make sure it looks like a bowl. If it has a lip or flat bottom, it may be inside out, so be sure to check. If it is inside out, just turn it over in the palm of your hand.

Clean your lens with contact lens solution. Never use water from the tap or anything else as you risk irritating your eye.

If your lens is torn or damaged, never place it in your eye.

Step 4.

Insert your contact lens.

Make sure you have a mirror ready for this part.

With your free hand, hold your upper eye lid open. This is important as you may try to blink reflexively.

Using the hand with your contact lens on, place your middle finger underneath your eye to stabilise your hand and pull the lower lid down.

You may want to look away at this point, or you may prefer to look straight at the mirror or contact lens – either way is fine. Place your lens gently on your eye and you’re nearly finished.

Step 5.

Blink, blink, blink.

Blink a few times to make sure the lens is in place properly and help your eye get used to the lens. If everything feels ok and you can see properly, you’ve successfully applied your contact lens.

Just repeat the procedure for your other eye and you’re ready.

For more information on the different types of contact lenses, click here.

If you are thinking about trying contact lenses but unsure as to whether they are right for you, click here to arrange your free contact lens trial.

Are contact lenses comfortable?

Soft contact lenses are thin and flexible and, with the new moisture rich materials that are available, they are so comfortable it is easy to forget you’re even wearing them!

Can anybody wear contact lenses?

Advances in technology mean that contact lenses are now available for a wide variety of prescription requirements, including astigmatism and high-powered prescriptions. We can even provide contact lenses that correct both near and distance vision in one lens, just like varifocal glasses.


Can I really just sleep and see?

Yes, once the effect is complete you simply sleep in the lenses each night and remove them in the morning. Also – and this is really clever – you will be able to see clearly with the lenses in when you wake up.

How quickly does it work?

After the first night your Dreamvision contact lenses will have made most of the necessary correction. Normally within less than a week you will be able to see clearly and will no longer be reliant on glasses or contact lenses during the day.

How is it possible to wear lenses overnight?

Dreamvision lenses are made of one of the very highest oxygen permeable materials, for maximum comfort and safety during overnight wear. The other unique benefit with Dreamvision is that unlike normal contact lens wear, your eye spends its waking hours with natural oxygen levels, uninhibited by contact lenses.

I work shifts and do not always sleep at night – could I still have Dreamvision lenses?

Yes. As long as you sleep on a regular basis for a reasonable amount of time, Dreamvision contact lenses will work.

What will it cost?

The monthly cost is similar to the price of wearing a pair of daily disposable contact lenses every day. This cost includes new lenses every six months in order to be sure that they are always providing optimum vision correction, plus all your aftercare from our Dreamvision specialists.

Eye Health

I have diabetes but my eyes haven’t changed, do I still need have my eyes tested?

Yes, you should make sure you have your eyes checked as frequently as your Optician recommends. People with diabetes are susceptible to certain eye conditions and your eye test will be able to spot if any of these develop. If you have diabetes all your eye tests will be free under the NHS.

Why do I need to wear sunglasses?

Your eyes are vulnerable to harmful UV light, just like your skin. Wearing sunglasses will help you avoid any potential damage. Protecting your eyes from UV light can also slow the onset of cataracts.

My eyesight seems to be worse recently, should I be worried?

If there has been a sudden deterioration in your vision, or you have experienced visual distortions, such as tunnel vision or flashing lights, then you should see your Optician or GP as soon as possible. It may not be anything to worry about but should be investigated just in case it is something more serious.

My eyes are sore and uncomfortable, what should I do?

Visit your Optician at your earliest opportunity. They will be able to find out what’s wrong and recommend a solution, or refer you to your GP if necessary.

Should I be worried about eye conditions?

If your eyes are healthy and you are having regular eye tests, you don’t need to worry unless you experience changes in your vision or eyes in general. If you have a family history of any eye condition, you should let your Optician know, and they can then keep an eye on you to make sure they spot any problems straight away. See the information about common eye conditions for more information.

Why do I need regular eye tests if I don’t need glasses or contact lenses?

Even if you don’t have a prescription, you can still suffer from certain eye conditions, and as well as measuring how well you can see, your eye test will also check the health of your eyes and spot any potential problems.

How often should I have my eyes tested?

Here at Scrivens Opticians, we get asked many questions about eye health, but one question that pops up most frequently is: “how often should I get my eyes tested?” so we’ve put together a little information page to help answer this common question.So how often should you have your eyes tested?

The short answer is every 2 years.

Even if you don’t need glasses it’s important to have your eyes checked every two years. You may not be suffering from any eye health problems at the moment, but a regular check-up can detect any underlying problems early on as well as any changes to your vision.

Conditions such as age-related macular degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma can all be detected with an eye test. If they are spotted earlier on they can be treated more effectively.

However, an eye test does much more than detect problems with vision; it can also detect medical problems such as high blood pressureand diabetes. In these cases, your optometrist will notice changes to the blood vessels at the back of your eyes and refer you to your GP if they find anything that may need addressing.

Optometrists also recommend that children under 16 have their eyestested annually. This is to help diagnose problems (if any) early. The sooner problems are detected the greater the chance of developing optimal vision.

Your optometrist may recommend that you have eye tests more frequently, if for example, you have a history of eye problems. Optometrists also recommend that people over 70 years should have their eyes tested once a year.

To recap;

Children under 16 years of age should have their eyes tested once a year.

Adults should have their eyes tested once every two years.

Adults over 70 should have their eyes tested once a year.

For more information on eye tests, click here.

If you are looking for more information on eye health, click here.


What glasses suit square faces?

If you have a square face shape, you should choose a design that is opposite to the shape of your face. So, you should be opting for a round or oval shaped pair of glasses.

There are many types of faces, and different styles of glasses suit different shapes of faces. When buying your glasses, it can be difficult to decide if they look good on you, or not. The first thing you need to think about is the shape of your face. The different shape categories include:

  • Square
  • Round
  • Oval
  • Oblong

If you are unsure of the shape category of your face, one thing you can try is to look in the mirror and compare your facial features with those who have similar ones. For example, you could search ‘Celebrities with square face shapes' and see if you have any similarities. Famous people with square face shapes include David Beckham, Lady Gaga, Brad Pitt and Natalie Portman.

A square face tends to be angular with a strong horizontal jawline and a square chin. It is also common for square-faced people to have broad foreheads. If you think your face is too square and wish to play down your angles, then wearing glasses with colour can help to divert attention away from face shape. What colour glasses you should choose depends on your hair colouring. For example, if you are blonde; green, coral or red are usually best; while, if you are a brunette or have black hair, opt for darker colours.

When you are choosing glasses, you are usually looking to soften and balance the sharp angles. The right frames can make your face appear longer – oval glasses tend to be the best for this. Avoid, if you can, square and geometric frames.

If you need a new pair of glasses then contact one of Scriven’s 175 branches. Find your nearest one here.

What are prisms in glasses used for?

Prisms in glasses are used to primarily correct double vision, for positional correction, or convergence correction. Recently, prisms have also been used to help people with hemianopia – a condition that causes blindness in half of the visual field in both eyes. This condition is common to those who have suffered brain injuries, and stroke victims.
If you suffer from the above issues, it can mean that an image one eye sees is not in line with what the other is seeing, thus creating an impression of two images instead of one. If glasses have a prism lens, it will correct the image, and will help to get the eyes working together as they should. It does this by using a prism to trick the brain into thinking that the eyes are working together, by shifting what you see slightly to align it with the other eye.
Normally, standard glasses only correct two types of eye conditions: focal distance (near or farsightedness) or an unusual curving of the cornea, such as astigmatism.
Prism glasses have a thinner apex and thicker base than standard glasses. This is to enable light to bend and slow. The angle, or index, of refraction that the light bends at will depend on the shape and thickness of the lens.
If you have started to get double vision, it is important you get it checked out as soon as possible by a qualified optician as this can be a symptom of wider problems such as diabetes, a brain tumour, high blood pressure, thyroid issues and cataracts.
Scrivens have over 175 branches across the UK, so find your nearest one today and book yourself in for an eye test.

I have to hold things at arms length to read properly – what does this mean?

Our eyes change over time and this may mean that you need reading glasses or varifocals. Your Optician will be able to test your eyes and advise you of the best solution for your eye sight needs.

How often do I need to get a new pair of glasses?

One of the most common questions we get asked at Scrivens is: “How often should I get new glasses?” Unfortunately there is no simple answer to this question.Some people may have to change their prescription frequently, whereas others may not need to for many years. Your optometrist is the best person to make a judgement as to whether your glasses need changing.

You may feel like you can see perfectly with your current glasses, but your old lenses may be working against you. Even if you aren’t noticing any problems, it’s important to have your eyes tested and glasses checked regularly.

If you wear glasses, you need to have an eye test at least every two years to allow your optometrist to assess your vision. They will take certain factors into account and provide you with the best options.

Factors such as damage to the lens, age, eye health and improvements in technology all make a difference when it comes to updating your glasses.  If you are using an outdated prescription, your glasses may be causing eye strain, which can lead to headaches and migraines.

In addition, technology is constantly evolving and in the two years between recommended eye tests, there may have been improvements to lenses that will benefit you and provide you with a greater level of vision.

Optometrists recommend that adults over 16 years of age have their eyes tested every two years and those over 70 once a year. Children should also have their eyes tested annually.

For more information on eye tests, click here.

My glasses don’t fit as well as they used to, what can I do?

Some glasses may become loose over time; if you take your glasses to your local store they may be able to tighten them for you.

Is it true that wearing glasses can make my eye sight worse?

No, wearing glasses doesn’t not make your eye sight worse. In fact, it will reduce eye strain and any headaches caused by straining to see. Studies have also shown that correcting eye sight, with glasses or contact lenses, can actually have a positive affect on a child’s eye sight.

What does AR coating mean?

AR stands for Anti-Reflection. An Anti-Reflection coating helps stop glare, so is ideal for driving and computer use. They also make the lenses appear clearer to others, so they can see your eyes and not reflections on the lenses.

Can I get sunglasses with prescription lenses?

Yes, all our sunglasses can be made to your prescription. You can also have any frame you like tinted to create sunglasses.

What frame will look best on me?

When choosing the right frame for you, you should take into account your face shape and the style that you want. Our Guide to Buying Glasses has some pointers that will help you. Our staff are trained in frame styling and will be happy to help you choose the best frame for you.

What happens if I break my glasses?

Depending on the damage, Scrivens may be able to repair your glasses. You can simply pop in to any Scrivens Opticians store and our staff will help you. If you’re covered by our Spectacle Replacement Scheme and your glasses are beyond repair, you can get a replacement pair for just 10% of the purchase price.


I think my ears are blocked with wax

  • Book an appointment with your hearing aid audiologist or GP for advice
  • Alternatively, over the counter oil based remedies can help. Please read and follow advice and instructions on the packaging
  • When using an oil based treatment on your ears it is best to either not wear your hearing aids at all or use the treatment at night and do not put your hearing aids in until the morning.
  • Rinsing your ear canals with water when in the shower can also help reduce wax build up
  • As the oil or water is absorbed by the wax it can expand making your ear temporarily feel more blocked, this is not something to be worried about.
  • Using cotton buds is more likely to block your ears than unblock them! Do not use them in your ears!

How much do hearing aid batteries cost?

One thing people worry about is the financial aspect of having hearing aids, and the maintenance that comes with them. However, they might not be as expensive as you think – hearing aids themselves range in prices depending on the kind you get, and some can even be prescribed through the NHS. In addition to this, if your hearing aids have been prescribed by the NHS, this may also include your hearing aid batteries, meaning they are free of charge.

However, if you are responsible for paying for your own hearing aids, you will also need to buy hearing aid batteries. Luckily, hearing aid batteries are very inexpensive, usually costing between £1 and £3 for a multipack. Depending on the size of your battery and the hearing aids that you wear, this will impact how long your batteries actually last and thus how expensive they become. However, if you are wearing your hearing aids for up to 16 hours a day, a battery should, on average, last between one and two weeks.

Hearing aids and hearing aid batteries do not have to be an unwanted expense – visit your local Scrivens Hearing Care branch to discuss your options with a member of staff.

How to get hearing aids for free

One thing many people worry about is the cost of hearing aids, as well as the maintenance that goes with them; however, many of our hearing aids are not as expensive as you might expect. If you have visited your doctor about a decline in your hearing who has then referred you to Scrivens Hearing Care through the NHS, you may be eligible to receive hearing aids for free.

Scrivens Hearing Care works with the NHS to provide free hearing aids where possible, as well as the best hearing assessments and aftercare possible. The best bit is we can often fit many of our patients on the same day as their assessment appointment, so most people can start benefitting from clearer hearing straight away.

If you are concerned about your hearing but haven’t yet been for a hearing assessment, either visit your GP our pop in to your local Scrivens branch to discuss what the best options are for you. Many people get nervous about hearing assessments for a number of reasons, but there is nothing to be worried about – the assessments are relatively quick, they’re pain free and our staff will do all they can to help resolve any problems you have been having with your hearing.

How to get free hearing aids for seniors

As we grow older, our hearing can be affected as a natural part of the aging process. Not many of us notice for quite a while, but whenever you do notice that your hearing has changed, it is best to get it checked to find out if you need a hearing aid – not only to improve your hearing, but improve your quality of life.

Scrivens Hearing Care works with the NHS to provide hearing services in a number of our branches across the country, in order to help those who have been referred by their GP. If you are a senior, or you are enquiring on behalf of a senior, our advice would be to visit the GP about your hearing where you can then be referred to Scrivens. Or, alternatively, get in touch with us if you have any questions.

Our NHS free hearing aids for seniors includes a number of services, such as a comprehensive hearing assessment, fitting of digital hearing aids (where required), ongoing aftercare support and a regular supply of batteries. If you are worried about the cost of hearing aids and the maintenance that goes with them, you don’t need to worry – Scrivens Hearing Care is here to help, and many seniors are eligible to receive free hearing aids through the NHS.

How do I go about protecting my hearing?

There are a few simple ways to protect yourself from Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). Small adjustments like turning down your MP3 player by a couple of notches and wearing hearing protection whilst at work will go a long way in the battle to keep your hearing safe.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has stated that noise levels above 105dB can damage your hearing if endured for more than 15 minutes each week.

However, even lower levels between 85dB and 90dB can cause permanent damage if you’re exposed to them for long periods every day.

Here are a few tips that will help protect your hearing:

1. Wear ear protection

If you work in construction or around heavy machinery, chances are you will be exposed to loud noises regularly. The longer you are exposed to noise levels above 80dB, the greater your chances of developing NIHL. A simple way of combatting hearing loss is to wear hearing protection such as earplugs or earmuffs. If possible, get away from the loud noise as often as you can.

The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 protects staff who are exposed to loud noises in the workplace. The regulations state that workers must wear hearing protection if the daily average noise levels reach 85dB. If you use power saws, drills or any other type of noisy equipment, wear earmuffs or earplugs. If you are experiencing high levels of noise, speak to your HR department.

2. Turn your music down

Try not to listen to your music at high volumes. MP3 players and iPods have a maximum volume of around 110 dB which is extremely loud. If you are finding it uncomfortable to listen to your music, that’s a sign your ears are telling you to turn it down.

The NHS recommends that you opt for the 60:60 rule. This means you should listen to your music at 60% of the MP3 player’s maximum volume for no more than 60 minutes a day.

If you are listening to your stereo in the car at loud volumes, this can also cause hearing loss. By listening to loud music in a confined space, you are increasing the risk of hearing damage. Enjoy it, just turn it down a little.

3. Use noise cancelling headphones

If you can hear external noises whilst listening to your music, you may be tempted to turn the volume up. This could potentially damage your hearing. A good idea would be to use noise cancelling headphones or the old-school ear muff type headphones. These headphones block out background noise more effectively than inner ear style headphones, which means you can listen to your music clearly at a lower volume.

4.Use earplugs at concerts and gigs

If you enjoy live music, take earplugs with you. This way you can reduce noise levels anywhere between 15 and 35dB. Bar/venue staff may not always have free earplugs available, so it’s a good idea to invest in a pair and keep them with you. Don’t worry about not being able to hear the band properly – if you invest in a pair of good quality earplugs, they can actually make live music sound better by drowning out white noise.

5. Give your ears a rest

If you have been exposed to loud noise, give them time to recover. Your ears need at least 16 hours to recover properly after spending as little as 2 hours immersed in 100dB sound – for example if you have been to a nightclub or gig. The more you reduce this recovery time the more you put yourself at risk of hearing loss.

These are just a few tips on how to reduce the risk of hearing loss. Click here to see our great range of ear protection.

What if I want to cancel my order?

Due to the custom nature of these products it is not possible to refund payment once they have been manufactured. If you do wish to cancel your order you can use the contact us page or call 0800 626 427 within 48 hours of placing your order.

Providing the products ordered have not been manufactured we will give you a full refund of the amount paid.

What does SNR mean?

SNR stands for Single Number Rating. It is a rating system set up by the EU to show the amount of protection earplugs provide.

What does dB mean?

dB, or decibels, is the unit that sound is measured in, and gives you an indication of the pressure your ears are under. Every 3 dB added doubles the sound, but you may not even notice. Every 10dB added increases the sound energy by ten, and adding 20dB increases it by a hundred.

Are there particular noise levels that will damage my hearing?

Many of the noises we are exposed to on a daily basis can contribute to hearing loss, so it’s vital we take action to prevent damage to our ears.

Those who work in certain industries including construction, engineering, food & drink and entertainment are especially at risk of developing Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) as they are surrounded by loud machinery, the constant hum of crowds and loud music for extended periods of time.

Any noises that are very loud and last for a long time can damage your hearing.

Here is an example of decibel levels:

  • 30dB – Quiet bedroom at night
  • 40dB – Quiet library
  • 60dB – Normal conversation
  • 75dB – Busy Street
  • 80dB –  Passing lorry
  • 85dB+ Any continued exposure to noise at this level will cause damage
  • 85dB – Lawn mower/heavy traffic:
  • 90dB – Forklift truck
  • 98dB  – Hand drill
  • 100dB – Motorcycle (riding)
  • 110dB – Rock Concert/Nightclub
  • 110 – 115dB – Maximum volume of an iPod
  • 120dB – Human threshold of discomfort
  • 120dB – Chainsaw/Ambulance Siren
  • 130 dB – Human Threshold of pain
  • 130dB – Jet engine

There are two factors that increase the risk of hearing loss: volume and length of exposure.

Any continued exposure to noises over 85 dB will cause damage to your hearing.

A sure sign that you have been exposed to noise that’s too loud is ringing in the ears, or a feeling like you have cotton wool in your ears. If you are finding that these symptoms are becoming commonplace throughout your day, arrange an appointment with one of our Hearing Aid Audiologists as you may be suffering from hearing loss.

An increase in decibel levels, however minor, can have serious consequences. If you are listening to your iPod at full volume all day, you may cause irreparable damage to your hearing – turning it down just a few notches can make a big difference. In addition, if you operate power tools without hearing protection, you are also at risk of damaging your hearing.

For more tips on how to avoid Noise Related Hearing Loss see our FAQ page on how to protect your hearing.

How does hearing damage happen?

Within the inner ear is an organ called the cochlea. Situated inside the cochlea are a number of tiny hair cells that receive the sound signals entering the ear and pass them on to the brain.  Exposure to noises louder than 85dB for a prolonged period of time wears these hair cells down, causing the sounds they pick up to become muffled. The higher the dB of the sound, the quicker your hearing will be damaged. If you are exposed to noise that reaches 85dB, it takes 8 hours to constitute a danger to your hearing. The louder the sound, the quicker it takes. 95dB takes 45 minutes, 100dB 15 minutes, 105dB 5 minutes, 110dB under 2 minutes, and 115 dB can affect your hearing in less than 30 seconds.

Hearing Aids

My hearing aid is not working

  • Check that the battery is fitted correctly
  • Check whether a new battery is needed
  • Check that the hearing aid is clean and clear of wax deposits

They sound muffled

  • Hearing aids can sound muffled if there is wax in your ear or in the hearing aid
  • Clean your hearing aid thoroughly using the equipment provided
  • Check for wax build-up on any part of the hearing aid, especially where the sound comes out
  • If your last hearing check was not recent, your hearing levels may have changed

It keeps whistling

  • It is quite common for your hearing aids to whistle if they are turned on but not fitted into your ear. Whistling from a hearing aid during insertion or removal from the ear is quite normal if the hearing aid is switched on
  • Check that your hearing aid is correctly inserted into your ear
  • Hearing aids can whistle if there is wax in your ear or in the hearing aid
  • Clean your hearing aid thoroughly using the equipment provided
  • “Feedback” is sometimes caused when the volume control is adjusted and your hand reflects the sound back into the instrument’s microphone. This should cease when you move your hand

What is the best hearing aid to buy?

If you have been for a hearing assessment, either via your GP through the NHS or directly with Scrivens, and a Hearing Aid Audiologist has diagnosed hearing loss for which you require hearing aids, you will have a number of options to choose from. It all depends on the severity of your hearing loss, as well as the type of hearing aid you would personally prefer to wear, based on the look and feel when you have tried and few on and made a comparison. The aim will be to come to a decision that both the audiologist and you are happy with. It is particularly important to make the decision together, on together is important, as you will be able to advise on which design and style you prefer, and the audiologist will be able to make suggestions based on your particular level of hearing loss.

We have a number of hearing aids available, including:

  • In the Ear (ITE) - custom made hearing aids which fit into the bowl shaped area of your outer ear instead of inside the ear canal. A popular choice due to their discreet size and comfortable fit.
  • On the Ear (OTE) - one of the most commonly worn hearing aids as they are small, subtle and available in a variety of designs and colours. They are a popular choice for first-time hearing aid wearers as they provide a more natural sound.
  • Behind the Ear (BTE) - hearing aids which provide the most power, as well as being able to handle moderate to severe hearing loss. BTEs are even suitable for those with a profound hearing loss.

There is a wide range of hearing aids available at Scrivens Hearing Care – visit your local branch to find out more.



How to buy hearing aids online

If you have noticed a decline in your hearing and you are interested in finding more about how we can help you, there are a number of options. Firstly, we recommend you take our online hearing test, and if the results of this tell you to have a further hearing assessment, simply pop into a Scrivens Hearing Care branch to arrange an appointment. However, if you complete the online hearing test and it reassures you that your hearing is satisfactory, but you are still concerned, you should definitely still enquire about a hearing assessment in your local branch.

Following your hearing assessment, if you have been advised by your Hearing Aid Audiologist to wear aids to improve your hearing, it will be time to find the right ones for you. Although you may have browsed Scrivens’ range of hearing aids online, the best way to choose and purchase hearing aids is by trying out a few different styles and designs.

When you have tried out a few different hearing aid options, it will be time to decide which ones are best for you personally – the reason it’s so important to try them on and see what you’re comfortable with is that they are all so different. For example, In the Ear (ITE) hearing aids fit into the bowl shaped area of your outer ear instead of inside the ear canal, On the Ear (OTE) hearing aids are small and subtle and available in a variety of designs, and Behind the Ear (BTE) hearing aids provide the most power, as well as being able to handle moderate to severe hearing loss.

What do hearing aids sound like?

Hearing aids are often described as having a “sound” – however, the description of this can differ from one person to another, as the perception of sound is impossible to be measured. Sound is subjective and can therefore be difficult to describe to another person who may be hearing something completely different.

Sometimes, those who are wearing hearing aids describe the sound as ‘metallic’, ‘clinical’ or ‘pleasant’. Some can be worried that the sound of hearing aids will be like constant white noise, but this is not the case. The purpose of hearing aids is to improve your hearing, and although you may be able to hear something slight from time to time, the focus won’t be on what the hearing aid sounds like, but more what you are able to hear through the use of your hearing aids.

If you are concerned about your hearing but you are worried about the possibility of wearing hearing aids, visit your local Scrivens Hearing Care branch to discuss your options. Although the thought of wearing a hearing aid might be quite daunting, the long-term effects are extremely beneficial and can improve your quality of life. Browse our website for more information on our range of hearing aids, and don’t hesitate to book a hearing assessment if you feel that your hearing may have deteriorated.

How to select a hearing aid

If a Hearing Aid Audiologist has diagnosed hearing loss for which you require hearing aids, you will have a few options to choose from. Depending on the degree of hearing loss you are experiencing, as well as the type of hearing aid you would prefer to wear, you will be able to come to a decision that both the audiologist and you are happy with. Making the decision together is important, as your audiologist will be able to make recommendations based on your particular level of hearing loss, whilst you will be able to advise which style and design you prefer.

Scrivens Hearing Care has a wide variety of hearing aids available. For example, some options include:

  • On the Ear (OTE) - one of the most commonly worn hearing aids as they are small, subtle and available in a variety of designs and colours. They are a popular choice for first-time hearing aid wearers as they provide a more natural sound.
  • Behind the Ear (BTE) - hearing aids which provide the most power, as well as being able to handle moderate to severe hearing loss. BTEs are even suitable for those with a profound hearing loss.
  • In the Ear (ITE) - custom made hearing aids which fit into the bowl shaped area of your outer ear instead of inside the ear canal. A popular choice due to their discreet size and comfortable fit.

There are numerous hearing aids available at Scrivens Hearing Care – pop into your local branch to find out more.

How well do hearing aids work?

Hearing aids have been proven to greatly improve your hearing, but it isn’t always a quick fix; many people who are new to wearing hearing aids think the process will be much like wearing glasses; you pop them on and all is well again. However, wearing hearing aids is completely different – the brain needs to adapt to the new hearing aids you are wearing in order for you to hear clearly again, and although this can often happen relatively quickly, it usually takes a while to completely get used to wearing them. Hearing aids help with hearing loss, but don’t restore normal hearing.

If you are wondering how well hearing aids work because you believe you may be experiencing hearing loss, book a hearing test at Scrivens and speak to one of our Hearing Aid Audiologists. If hearing aids are required, you will be able to choose which ones are best for you, then it is time to get used to wearing them in real-life, day-to-day situations. When you have worn your hearing aids out in public, for example, or whilst having conversations with friends and family members, you will begin to get used to wearing them and be able to hear things more clearly.

What do hearing aids look like?

There are a number of different types of hearing aids available from Scrivens Hearing Care, and they all look slightly different. One thing a lot of customers ask is if they are particularly noticeable to other people; here at Scrivens, we pride ourselves on providing hearing aids that not only improve your hearing, but also ensure comfort whilst you wear them and are discreet. If you do feel strongly about your hearing aids looking as discreet as possible, we are able to show you a number of different hearing aid options available to help find the best choice for you.

When people think of hearing aids, they often think of BTE’s – “Behind the Ears” – which sit behind the ear. However, there is a wide variety of hearing aids available at Scrivens Hearing Care. For example, ITCs (In The Canal) and CICs (Completely in Canal) are particularly small and discreet whilst improving your hearing, which is what a lot of people are looking for. Speak to your Scrivens Hearing Aid Audiologist for further information and to discuss what different hearing aids look like and which would be the best option for you.

How much hearing loss requires a hearing aid?

Whether or not you require a hearing aid or not depends on a number of factors, such as the level of hearing loss you are experiencing and if it is expected to be temporary or long term. For example, a decline in hearing can sometimes be down to factors such as a build-up in ear wax, a damaged ear drum or an ear infection. These issues can usually be cleared up with medication meaning you will not require a hearing aid. Sometimes if a person has been experiencing a build-up in ear wax for some time, they may think their hearing is declining, when actually there is a simple solution for this.

However, if you have been experiencing a decline in your hearing loss over a period of time, or you have noticed that hearing certain tones, pitches and sounds has become increasingly difficult, this could be a more long-term, permanent decline in your hearing. It’s nothing to worry about – having a hearing aid fitted to suit your style and budget will improve your hearing in no time. Speak to your Scrivens Hearing Aid Audiologist for further advice.

What are Behind The Ear (BTE) hearing aids?

Behind The Ear hearing aids are named as such due to the fact they sit discreetly Behind The Ear and transfer sound directly to the ear canal via a tube and ear mould which sits within the ear. Behind the ear hearing aids provide the most power and can handle anything from moderate to severe hearing loss easily. BTE hearing aids can also be used for people with a profound hearing loss.

The Behind The Ear hearing aid is commonly used where In The Ear (ITE) or Completely In Canal (CIC) hearing aids are inappropriate. In addition, the fact that all the controls and electronics are housed in a larger casing makes it easier for users to operate, especially if they have limited dexterity.

The Behind The Ear hearing aid is an extremely discreet option for those who have cosmetic concerns. Alternatively, the BTE hearing aid can be made in a wide variety of colours depending on your style.

For expert advice about our range of hearing aids, including Behind The Ear hearing aids, contact Scrivens Hearing Care today, or alternatively pop in to any of our 300+ stores across the country to speak with one of our expert Hearing Aid Audiologists.

Scrivens are also pleased to be able to offer a wide variety of free NHS hearing aids to eligible NHS patients. To find out if you are eligible for our NHS hearing care service click here.

What are In The Canal (ITC) hearing aids?

In The Canal (ITC) hearing aids are very discreet and sit in the canal of the ear (the entrance of the ear).

Each In The Canal hearing aid is custom fit for each user, ensuring a snug yet comfortable fit that is almost unnoticeable, providing users with a discreet option that can also allow additional features to be used, including directional microphones and manual volume wheels.

Due to the fact In The Canal hearing aids are somewhat larger than Completely In Canal hearing aids (CIC), they can use a larger battery and can therefore benefit from a longer battery life.

In The Canal hearing aids are sometimes not appropriate for users with limited dexterity due to their size.

They are most appropriate for those suffering from mild to severe hearing loss and can be constructed in a variety of colours to suit your preferences.

If you need any more information about In The Canal hearing aids, or advice on which hearing aid is right for you, call into any of our 300+ plus branches throughout the UK for expert advice from one of our Hearing Aid Audiologists.

Scrivens are also pleased to be able to offer a wide variety of free NHS hearing aids to eligible NHS patients. To find out if you are eligible for our NHS hearing care service click here.

What are On The Ear (OTE) hearing aids?

On The Ear hearing aids, also known as over the ear hearing aids are very similar to Behind The Ear hearing aids as they incorporate a sound processor as well as a receiver that sits comfortably on the ear. On The Ear hearing aids can be a great deal smaller than BTE hearing aids yet use a similar design.

A slimline case houses the electronics that is connected to the ear bud via a thin, almost unnoticeable transparent tube. This ear bud, unlike BTE hearing aids, allows natural sound to enter the ear and does not block out external noises, reducing the “plugged” feeling sometimes associated with hearing aids.

On The Ear hearing aids are often the best choice for people with cosmetic concerns as they are very discreet and are hardly noticeable. However, Scrivens Hearing Care can offer a wide range of colours to suit all tastes and styles.

If you are looking for the definitive selection of hearing aids, including the very discreet On The Ear hearing aids, look no further than Scrivens Hearing Care. Our expert Hearing Aid Audiologists can help you find the best hearing aid to suit your individual needs and lifestyle, so why not pop in to any of our 300+ stores across the UK for a free hearing health check and some expert advice. Even if you’re just looking for some advice or perhaps needing an upgrade, contact us today.

Scrivens are also pleased to be able to offer a wide variety of free NHS hearing aids to eligible NHS patients. To find out if you are eligible for our NHS hearing care service click here.

NHS Hearing

Will the service be as good as my local hospital?

Our contract with the NHS sets clear standards of clinical excellence that all providers must work to, regardless of whether you visit a hospital or a local community provider. We must provide all patients with the opportunity to give us feedback on the service they receive. We are very proud of the fact that 90% of our NHS patients rate our service as very good or excellent and 93% would recommend us to a friend or family member.

How do I find out if I can get my NHS hearing aid from you?

Visit our ‘Eligibility Checker’ page and type in your postcode to find out if we are able to supply you with your NHS hearing aid. You can visit the page by clicking here.

What happens once I get my hearing aids?

We understand that getting used to wearing hearing aids can take time, so we’ll arrange regular reviews to make sure you are getting the most out of your hearing aids. You can also drop in at any time if you have questions or concerns.

Will they cost me anything?

The NHS hearing aids, batteries and aftercare are all free, wherever you get them from as they are funded by the NHS.

I thought you could only get NHS hearing aids from the hospital?

This is no longer the case. NHS Adult Hearing services are available from local providers in certain areas. In some areas, you can just visit your local branch who can provide a full hearing assessment without a referral from your GP, while in some areas, you will need a referral from your GP, where you can choose from a selection of accredited providers in your local community. Contact your local branch to find out more.