When should a child get his or her first pair of glasses?
Your child should get her first pair of glasses when she needs them. This could be as young as a few months of age. Eye doctors who specialize in children’s eye care say kids usually become near or far sighted between ages 6 and 12. However even infants can wear glasses when they need to see well.Experts believe that children should have a screening test before they enter school.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and the American Optometric Association (AOA) recommend that all infants and children be screened for vision problems. A child who doesnot pass one of the screening tests below should see an
ophthalmologist or optometrist.
The AAO and AOA recommend the following screenings:
- Your child’s doctor should examine your newborns eyes to make sure they are healthy. Not all vision problems are the result of abnormal focus. Infants may be born with cataract, cloudy corneas and other problems that impact vision .
- A health care provider should examine the eyes of youngsters between 6 months and 1 year of age.
- A health care provider should do vision screening between ages 3 and 3 1/2 years. The child’s visual acuity should be checked. A formal test of visual acuity should be done by age 5.
Doctors can prescribe glasses even bifocals and contact lenses for premature infants and other children.
Strabimus or crossed eyes can be found in children as young as 2 or 3 months. This condition may cause reduced vision in the weaker eye because the brain recognizes the image of the better-seeing eye and ignores the image of the weaker eye. Doctors treat it by putting a patch on the “good” eye to strengthen and improve vision in the weaker eye. Treatment is usually successful when the condition is diagnosed when a child is young.
Surgery may also be used to make the eyes focus simultaneously on the same point. This is generally done if patching isn’t successful.
Signs of eye problems
- Infants older than 3 months who do not make eye contact or have eyes that look different ways need to be evaluated by a pediatrician. It may be a sign of blindness, intellectual disability, neurological problems or autism, as well as eye problems.
- Children who tilt their heads to see things.
- Infants who don’t watch a favorite thing (such as a pacifier) if you move it to the side.
- Children, including older children, who squint. A school-age child who squints to see the blackboard may be nearsighted.
Glasses for children.American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus.https://www.aapos.org/terms/conditions/54. Accessed November 19th, 2018
Get a Great Deal on Kids’ Eyeglasses at America’s Best.Americas Best. https://www.americasbest.com/eyeglasses/kids-glasses. Accessed June 21st, 2017