Wednesday 7 December 2016

Eye health: Babies and toddlers

Published 22/11/2010 | 13:02

Good vision is very important to children because so much of what they learn is taken in through their eyes. So it's never too soon to start your child's eyecare.

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You'll find most infants and pre-school children have regular vision screening as part of their routine developmental checks.

These early checks are invaluable, but aren't as thorough as a full eye examination by a qualified optometrist.

When your child is born, the paediatrician will check their vision when they are still in the hospital ward. It is very rare for there to be any problem with a newborn's vision.

A newborn's eye is about 75% of the size of an adult eye, and it will continue to develop for the first two years of life.

Tests for toddlers

We advise that children should have their first eye examination at around three years old.

Learning difficulties can sometimes be caused by uncorrected vision problems, so the earlier they can be detected, the better the chance of correcting them.

What's more, at Specsavers Opticians, the test is designed to be friendly and fun for kids of all ages.

Inside the test room

It's important to remember that eye examinations won't hurt your child, and that your child doesn't have to be able to read yet.

First, the optician will ask about any family eyesight problems and whether the child has any difficulty playing games, looking at pictures or seeing small objects.

Then several child-friendly tests will be undertaken, after which the optician will discuss the results with you.

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