It’s that time of year and as kids are either back in school, or headed there soon, it’s important to make sure they’ve got everything they need to have the best year yet. Ensuring their vision is healthy is a big part of that. Over the next few weeks, CEF will help answer some of the most pressing questions a parent might have about how to know their child is ready!
Won’t I notice that my child has a vision problem?
Unfortunately, the answer is no, you may not notice that your child has a vision problem. Unless the vision in both eyes is so poor that your child cannot see well enough to recognize faces and objects or navigate his or her environment, it is likely that a vision problem may go undetected.
When children are very small, their visual needs are generally for objects close to them, and the things they use and see are usually larger in size; they don’t sit in the back of a classroom, read road signs while driving, or look at small print. Small children are often non-verbal or simply don’t have the words to express a problem.
If vision has never been clear, they just won’t know that their world is not supposed to look blurry.
And if vision is good in one eye and poor in the other, you probably won’t realize there is any problem at all, since both eyes are open as your child goes about daily activities. Children with myopia (nearsightedness) will often be amazed that there are individual shingles on rooftops and distinct leaves on trees when viewing the world for the first time with glasses, small things they couldn’t see before.
“One of my most vivid memories is of a mother who brought her son to our office because he failed the vision screening at school. His vision was poor in both eyes because he was extremely farsighted. Despite witnessing his obvious difficulty reading the eye chart, she was very upset, not believing that she, his own mother, would have not known her son couldn’t see well. She simply did not believe it. When they returned as recommended after her son had been wearing the glasses for 6 weeks, the mother told me she cried on the way home after he got his glasses. Why? Because on the car ride home, he looked down at himself and exclaimed in amazement, ‘Mom, I have hair on my arms!’” – Sheryl Menacker, MD Pediatric Ophthalmologist, Southampton, PA
That is why vision screening so very important—because the connections between the eyes are the brain are formed in childhood, identifying and treating vision problems early provides the greatest chance of having the best vision possible to last a lifetime.
Visit Seemore.Today to learn more and download our Parent’s Guide with lots of helpful information about vision screening.
We want all kids to have healthy sight for life! Help support the work of the Children’s Eye Foundation, the official foundation of the world’s largest physician organization dedicated to children’s eye care and adults with strabismus.