Vision problems in children – Know the warning signs
Children with a family history of vision problems have an increased risk of having eye problems themselves. It is important for all parents to know the warning signs of vision problems in children.
Signs of vision problems in children
Babies under 1 year of age
Babies older than 3 months should be able to follow or track an object like a toy with their eye balls as it moves across their field of vision. If your baby is unable to see or can’t make steady eye contact by this time, let your doctor know.
The eyes of most babies look misaligned (strabismus). However after 4 months of age inward crossing or outward drifting that occurs regularly is usually abnormal. Let your doctor know if one of these is happening.
If your child’s eyes are misaligned, let your doctor know right away. However some vision problems such as lazy eye (amblyopia) has no signs and your child may not complain of having problems with his vision. It is important at this time to have your child’s vision checked. There are special tests to check your child’s vision even if he or she cannot read.
If you notice any of these symptoms in your child, let your doctor
- white or grayish-white color in the pupil
- eyes that are misaligned (look crossed, turn out or don’t focus together)
- pus or crust in either eye
- bulging eye
- drooping eyelids
- child sitting close to the TV or holding books too close
- child tilting their head
- child avoiding color activities, puzzles or other detailed activities
- difficulty with eye-hand-body coordination when playing ball or bike riding
- child often complains of eye pains, itchiness or discomfort
- redness in either eye that doesn’t go away in a few days
- child rubs or squints eye often
- eyes that are always sensitive to light
- any changes in the eye from how they look
Signs of vision problems in young kids. WebMD. http://www.webmd.com/eye-health/features/child-eye-and-vision-problems. Accessed January 8, 2016
Preschool vision 2 to 5 years of age. American optometric Association. http://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/good-vision-throughout-life/childrens-vision/preschool-vision-2-to-5-years-of-age?sso=y. Accessed January 8, 2016