True/False: Children are just tiny humans? At R City Eye Care we say false, especially when it comes to their eyes! Childrens’ bodies are constantly growing and changing. During this time, their eyes are continuing to develop and must be monitored for issues, such as eye turns, lazy eyes, and/or an inability to focus. Any of these issues will have an impact on their ability to learn and can even affect overall body development.
What are the most common indicators of vision issues in children?
Indicators of vision issues begin at a very young age. The first indicator you may notice is your child falling behind on developmental milestones. There may also be subtle hints such as frequent eye rubbing and squinting, or more obvious hints such as turning their head when attempting to focus. As they get older more blatant indicators include skipping letters, words, or entire lines when reading.
So how do you catch vision issues early while they are still treatable?
We recommend children have their first comprehensive eye exam around 6 months of age. At this age we look for any large amounts of nearsightedness or farsightedness as well as any eye conditions/diseases that will prevent the child’s vision from developing normally. If no vision issues are detected we recommend the next exam at 3 years old and another before they start kindergarten. Once they are school age, if no issues arise, an exam every 1 to 2 years is recommended.
Do school vision screenings tell the whole story?
Many schools include vision screenings for children, especially during elementary school. One common misconception is that this screening suffices as an eye examination. All school screenings evaluate visual acuity, or the ability to see figures from a specific distance, and some even use special tools to determine nearsightedness and farsightedness. However, very few school screenings evaluate eye health and binocular vision, the ability of the eyes to work together. During a comprehensive eye exam at R City Eye Care, we evaluate the visual system and eye health from the front to the back of the eyes. Then we develop an individualized treatment plan to set your child up for success with the most clear and comfortable vision possible!
Does all this screen time affect my child’s vision?
Screen time has increased monumentally this year, and with that comes the same digital eye strain experienced by adults who spend 8+ hours per day on the computer! Fortunately, this eye strain/fatigue can be minimized by wearing glasses with a blue light-blocking anti-reflective coating. At R City Eye Care we have both prescription and non-prescription blue light-blocking lenses available. Our optician will work with you and your child to provide the perfect fit for both function and fashion!