It is often thought that children must be able to read before they have their first eye test, but actually this is not the case. Recent advances in technology and testing techniques mean that it is possible to assess children as young as one year old. Shapes or other pictorial methods are often used instead of words, alongside simple ‘fixate and follow’ tests to ensure that eye movement is normal.
Children typically have no awareness of what their vision should be like. This means they may not perceive difficulties seeing the board at school or focussing on the television to be out of the ordinary. It is therefore important that you ensure your child has regular eye tests – generally once a year – to track any changes in their vision.
A child who struggling to read printed text or information on a screen can easily become frustrated at school, leading to boredom or disruptive behaviour. If allowed to progress, this can lead to a lack of interest in learning at all, which in turn could have significant consequences on their future.
Eye tests are free for children under the age of 18 and in full time education. And should your child require glasses, they are likely to be entitled to an NHS voucher allowing them to choose a free pair from a selection.
There are a variety of fun children’s designs available making wearing glasses fun for children, rather than something to worry about!
Your optician will talk your child through ways to look after their glasses and prevent them from becoming damaged. Children are often incredibly active which puts their eyewear at increased risk of falling off, breaking or getting scratched!
If your child has worn glasses for most of their childhood, once they turn eight they have the option to convert their prescription into contact lenses. Care of lenses is very different to spectacle care so they can be a great option for responsible youngsters who will look after them.
Your optician will be able to advise the day-to-day usage of lenses and teach your child how to insert and remove them safely.
To find out more about eye conditions or to book an eye test at City Eyewear, please call our friendly team on 01274 729393.