We often we take our vision for granted.
Many parents may not think their child could have a vision problem, but this is simply not true. Children’s vision may change frequently as they grow and go through the school years. An interesting statistic is that 80 percent of early learning is visual, so good vision is important to your child.
Good vision is a vital part of learning. Children have a difficult time concentrating if they are unable to see well. Parents and teachers should not automatically attribute a child’s lack of participation or performance to disinterest or even laziness. Routine eye exams often detect problems in a child’s vision that may have previously been labeled disinterested or lazy.
Vision problems in childhood are usually seeing in the distance (nearsightedness) or myopia. However, some children do have a problem seeing close work and reading (farsightedness). Other eye problems may be focusing and coordination. Children who have a hard time concentrating due to poor vision may not know that they are not learning well due to their vision problems. This can lead to poor self esteem and being labeled as having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
Detection is the key to helping children learn and understand the world around them. This can lead to being a successful child and adult. It is very important to schedule an annual eye exam for your child, especially if you notice some of the following:
— Frequent eye rubbing or blinking
— Frequent headaches
— Covering one eye
— Short attention span
— Avoiding reading assignments or holding reading materials close to the face
— An eye turning in or out
— Losing his or her place when reading
— Difficulty with reading retention
Each child needs an annual vision screening. This can be done at the physician’s office. If there is a concern during the screening, the child should have a comprehensive eye exam by an optometrist or ophthalmologist, who is a medical doctor that specializes in the eyes.
For more information, call the Clark County Health Department at 744-4482.