Vision and Development in Children
The key word in any discussion about your children’s eyesight and ability to see is development. If the development process has been affected at any time either in brain function or the vision of the eye, which can be pre or post natal then the future opportunities to improve vision can be lost if not detected. So it’s vitally important that you have your child tested by the age of two or earlier if you suspect a problem.
It is a common misconception that children need to be able to read before an eye examination can be carried out as there are many easy tests and methods that can successfully measure the refraction (long or short sightedness for example) and most importantly the health of your child’s eyes as well as checking for squints (convergent or divergent).
Any of these problems left uncorrected will most likely end up with a child with a lazy eye. (Amblyopia)
Behavioural Optometrists have also recognised that a fully corrected child viewing at distance may still have problems at near or in recognising letters and symbols. Many such children suffer from learning difficulties that are now considered suitable for exercises. Click here for more information on learning disabilities.
Other key times for ensuring your child’s eyesight is fully corrected are when they start school and then regularly thereafter on the Optometrists advice. Kids eye exams are free up to 16 and if at full time education under 19 years. They are allowed a test each year or more regularly if advised by an optometrist.
Children requiring spectacles are given a voucher to offset the cost of any spectacles