Whether done in the classroom, at home or in the wider environment around us, as much as 80% of learning is done visually. Our eyesight is the primary way in which we connect with the world and your child is no different. Their rapid development in their earliest years means that they are more reliant on their eyes than ever. Not only will their vision help them to learn color, shapes, numbers, how to read and how to perform basic functions, it will also help to keep them safe as they grow. Many people also underestimate the importance of vision on their child’s social skills and development. However, vision doesn’t just happen by itself. Your child’s brain will need to learn how to use the eyes as tools to function day to day. Unfortunately, there can be barriers that prevent this from happening.
One of the biggest challenges of pediatric vision is knowing when there is a visual problem that requires attention. All too often, a child is completely unaware that their vision is compromised and that they could be seeing more clearly than they are. Unfortunately, those children who suffer from undetected eye problems are often thought to have a learning disability instead. This is often due to their inability to sustain their concentration for long periods, read or comprehend what they are reading properly or experiencing other issues. Early detection and treatment of eye problems are essential if your child is to overcome their barriers to learning and develop their confidence and self-esteem and to fulfill their potential. One of the most effective ways to make sure that your child has the tools needed to learn successfully is to make sure that you bring them for regular pediatric eye exams.
A pediatric eye exam is not at all that different from the adult version of this appointment. However, to be sure that your child feels calm, comfortable and happy throughout, pediatric eye exams are performed by staff who have extensive experience at working with and reassuring younger guests!
Exactly what will happen may depend slightly on the age of your child. However, most elements of the exam can be adapted to suit the requirements of your child. For example, a visual acuity test is used to assess how well your child can see at different distances. Your child would normally be asked to read from a chart of letters. However, if your little one is unable to read, it may be possible for them to sound the letters out phonetically or for us to alter the exam so that they are looking at shapes and colors instead.
Some of the key elements that you can expect to be included in your child’s pediatric eye exam include:
A discussion of their health and visual history, as well as finding out if there is any family history of eye diseases
Visual acuity testing to determine if they have a refractive error that will require correction via prescription lenses
Testing of the alignment of their eyes
Assessment of their eye movement skills
Checking if their eyes work together as they should
An evaluation of the health of their eyes
Our team will also talk to you to discover if you have any concerns about your child’s sight, or if their teacher has mentioned any worries that they have.
In most cases, pediatric eye exams are recommended every two years. However, if your child has been found to have a vision or eye health issue, it may be that the frequency of these visits is increased.
If you would like more information about pediatric eye exams, or if you would like to schedule an appointment for your child, please get in touch with our experienced pediatric eye care team today.