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CHILDREN AND INFANT EXAMS « optometryonhydepark.com

Your eyes are for life.

childreneyeTaking your child to an eye doctor for a comprehensive eye exam is one of the most important things you can do for your child’s development.

The Ontario Association of Optometrists recommends that you bring your son or daughter in for their first eye exam at 6 months of age, then again by age 3 then annually thereafter.

It is particularly important that a child have a complete evaluation in the summer prior to entry into school.  Please be advised that a paediatrician’s or a school screening is not the same as a comprehensive eye examination.

Remember OHIP covers routine eye exams yearly for children aged 19 and under.

Our eyes are very important to our overall development and our learning ability.

Over 80 per cent of a child’s learning is based on vision.

Do not wait for your child to tell you he or she is having trouble seeing. What they see is “normal” for them. Some problems show very few (if any) symptoms and can only be detected through a regular eye exam.  There is so much more to healthy vision than 20/20!

If we can catch problems early, in many cases they can be treated. Nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism are the most common vision conditions among children. If vision problems remain untreated, children are left lagging behind in learning. Not everyone makes the connection. In fact, one out of six children diagnosed with a learning disability actually has a correctable vision problem.

The treatment of lazy eye and crossed eyes is critical at an early age and often not fully treatable after the age of 6.

We also must rule out childhood forms of eye diseases such as cataracts and glaucoma.

HOW DO WE EXAMINE CHILDREN?
Your child does not need to know the alphabet first before we can do an eye exam! An eye doctor can use shapes, animals and other child- friendly ways to evaluate vision and eye health. In fact, much of the testing doesn’t have to have much participation from the child. 

NOT JUST 20/20
For proper learning and reading ability, we want clear, comfortable vision.  Eye teaming and focusing skills and correct eye muscle movements are very important skills to be assessed in the exam.

Children may also be identified to have perceptual problems – that is, the brain has difficulty interpreting the information correctly that it receives form the eyes.

While glasses may be needed in some cases, vision therapy may also be recommended instead or in combination with glasses.

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