It is difficult to notice eye problems in children because they usually don’t understand that they’re experiencing trouble. Kids assume that everyone ‘sees’ things exactly the same way and develop an innate mechanism of coping. However, just because your little one is not complaining doesn’t mean that they are not facing potentially irreversible vision problems which can interfere with their learning.
Yes, that’s right; visual aids/mechanisms account for more than 80% of a child’s early learning. Hence, vision abnormality is not something that you should neglect callously.
Thankfully, there are a few signs that point towards an imminent children’s eye exam:
1) Reading and/or watching TV too closely
This is one of the most noticeable signs that your kid’s eyesight is less than ideal. If you see them holding their book very close to their eyes, take the book a bit further away from their face and check if they’re able to read properly. The same holds true for television as well. In any case, you may want to consider this as a sign that there is something more than meets the eye (no pun intended).
2) Covering eyes/blinking and squinting
These are other very important signs. Children with vision troubles oftentimes squint, blink frequently and/or rub their eyes while reading, watching TV, or playing video games. If you happen to notice them do that, it’s perhaps time for a precautionary children’s eye exam even though their vision might be just fine.
While headaches can also be attributed to a host of other reasons, they are probably the most common symptom of an impending eye trouble like amblyopia or glaucoma. If your little one starts having frequent headaches, don’t think twice before taking him/her to the ophthalmologist for a routine check-up. Another good indicator of a poor vision is when they feel better immediately after closing their eyes.
Many kids with inadequate vision may tilt their head while reading so as to view the text with just one eye. This may be a sign that they’re unable to see clearly with the other eye and hence, may warrant a thorough children’s eye exam.
Your child’s vision is incredibly precious and should not be compromised with. Even if your child is not experiencing any of the above symptoms, it would not hurt to arrange an annual children’s eye exam for precaution’s sake.