October is Children’s Vision Month, which optometric associations across Canada dedicate to raising awareness of the impact undiagnosed vision problems can have on a child’s learning and development.
So much of classroom learning is visual. Students not seeing well, are not performing to their full potential.
Untreated vision problems can lead to:
- learning at a slower rate than other children
- frustration with learning
- negative self-image
- behaviour and discipline problems
- possible need for special education and related services
- higher risk for school drop out
- lifelong disadvantages and underachievement
A comprehensive eye exam will ensure your child's vision health
A vision screening test is not the same as a comprehensive eye exam. While vision screening tests the ability to see clearly at a distance, a comprehensive eye exam looks at all aspects of a child’s vision function, including how well the eyes focus up close, how the eyes work together and the overall health of the eyes. Even if your child has 20/20 vision, they still need to have an eye exam.
When and how often should I see an Optometrist
Doctors of Optometry recommend infants have their first eye examination between six and nine months of age. Children should have at least one eye exam between the ages of two and five, and yearly after starting school to ensure optimal vision and development. Use our Find a Doc tool to make an appointment today!
What else can you do
Your child's eyes get a workout at home with computers, video games and homework. Make sure the rooms are eye-friendly by reducing glare and offering soft overall light. Encourage periodic breaks from digital screens to give their eyes a much-needed break. Optometrists recommend the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, take a 20 second break and focus on something at least 20 feet away. Balance computer time with plenty of creative, outdoor and quiet play - their eyes, developing minds, and their growing bodies will thank you.