This guest-post addresses an issue that I've recently been considering as The Boy gets older. The entirety of Mr. TBaM's family wear glasses, both my parents do, and his eyesight is something that I will constantly monitor. It's difficult to know when to take your child for their first eye-test, if they can't recognise letters then it makes it a bit tricky doesn't it? However, there are ways and means of getting around this problem in order to make sure his eye development is progressing properly.
Always in the back of my mind, is the little lad I taught eleven years ago who misbehaved in class, had atrocious handwriting and had a reading age of 6 when he was 10. I suggested his mum take him to the optician, and he came back with glasses so strong I couldn't see through them. By the end of the year, his reading age had crept back up to normal and he enjoyed class.
Some years ago, eye care was considered only an option for those with obvious poor vision. There used to be fewer selections when it came to contact lenses, and not everybody wants to rely on glasses. However, thanks to a great deal of advancement in everything from eye tests to contact lenses, eye care is now something that a huge percentage of families deal with at some point or another. This is one reason that parents need to be particularly aware of a number of different aspects of eye care with regard to their children. Getting your child off to a good start with corrective vision is very important, but it requires that as a parent you recognize the need for improved eyesight, and address it properly. Here are a few specific things to keep in mind.
- Eye tests can’t be assumed or taken for granted. Though many schools provide eye tests for young children, you need to take specific steps as a parent to make sure that your young children have their eyes tested. Many kids go for years and years without even realizing that they aren’t seeing as well as they could be, and while poor vision is not as big a problem for a young child as for an older kid or adult, it still does not need to be tolerated. Make sure that your children have eye tests at appropriate ages, and save them the hassle of dealing with poor vision.
- If you determine that your child does indeed need corrective vision, and he or she asks about contacts, don’t simply assume that contacts aren’t yet an option. There’s a popular opinion that contacts are not a good idea for young children, but in actuality major contact companies like Acuvue have options that may be suitable for your child. This is not to say that all contact lenses are suitable for all children, but there are options that could be better for your child.
- Finally, remember that vision changes over time, and often quite rapidly in young children. Getting your child set up with contact lenses or glasses isn’t enough – you also need to make sure that your child has regular appointments, so that you can be sure the prescription stays up-to-date. Often, corrected vision is so superior to natural vision that a child won’t even notice when he or she needs a change in prescription. This is where regular appointments can come in handy.
Grant Pearson is a husband, father, and a former teacher. Grant now enjoys writing and contributing to blogs and magazines nationwide. His honesty and quick wit make him easy to relate to and intriguing.