Proper Eye Care for Children
Did you know that as many as one in four children will have some form of vision problem that goes undetected for years? Eye problems in children can result in a host of problems including learning problems. It is important you take steps to protect your children's sight as early as possible. This includes bringing your children in for routine screenings every two years.
Proper eye care starts at an early age. Most children have few if any problems initially with their eyesight. It isn't unusual however over time for children to develop vision problems. Some children are born with more serious eye conditions, some of which are not obvious immediately which is why it may take some time to diagnose.
Fortunately early diagnosis and treatment of eye diseases and vision problems in children is easy.
Signs and Symptoms of Vision Problems Among Children
Children have many of the same signs and symptoms of eye problems as adults too. Sometimes children are not aware however they are experiencing problems. Many may not realize it is not normal to see things a bit fuzzy or bleary. Most children are diagnosed with vision problems when they start school and start having difficulty reading or seeing. Routine eye screenings are commonplace in many educational settings.
Unfortunately many children start developing eye problems earlier than the school years. Fortunately there is much you can do to improve your children's sight at an early age. Here are some of the more common warning signs and symptoms that your child may be experiencing vision or eye problems:
While an evaluation at school is helpful, keep in mind that even some school nurses miss out on important eye care problems. It is important you visit an eye care professional to correctly determine your child's vision acuity. An eye care professional can rule out various eye diseases and recommend corrective lenses if appropriate for your children.
- Your child frequently squints to read things or see.
- Your child holds reading materials or other objects close to their eyes.
- Your child complains of headaches or pain in their eyes.
- Your child consistently rubs their eyes, or eyes appear red and inflamed.
- Redness or tearing frequently occurs without known cause.
- Your child experiences certain developmental delays including cognitive delays.
- Your child appears to have a "lazy" eye or you have a history of lazy eye or vision problem in your family.
- Your child has an auto immune disease that affects their body and may result in vision problems.
- Your child complains of seeing double.
- You notice physical abnormalities in your child's eye; for example your child's eye may turn in or turn out or eye may appear crossed.
- You notice your child frequently moves their head or turns at unusual angles to see things.
Most eye care professionals recommend that kids get their first eye exam by the time they are six months old. Routinely children should have at least one additional exam by the time they are age three and before they enter school. Thereafter exams ever couple of years are commonplace. Children with a family history of vision problems may be more at risk for eye problems, hence it may behoove you to have your children's eyesight examined more closely in such cases.
Remember as a parent you must participate actively in your child's health, including the health of their eyes and overall well being. Consult with your kids regularly and ask them if they notice any problems with their vision. You may be surprised to find your children does have some mild vision problem requiring correction.
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