Children’s Eye Health and Safety

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Ring! Ring! Ring! The school bell is ‘ringing’ earlier and earlier each year. Grab your backpack, pencils, and most importantly, in August, an eye exam for your little ones. Coincidentally, August is National Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month.

It is a good idea to have your child’s eyes examined by their general practitioner as early as the age of three. The general practitioner will be able to identify any safety and health issues. Doc’ will even help identify common diseases associated with refractive errors such as these:

  • Strabismus, commonly known as cross-eye
  • Amblyopia, commonly known as lazy-eye
  • Ptosis, when eyelids are excessively droopy
  • Color blindness
  • Farsightedness
  • Nearsightedness
  • Astigmatism

If the general practitioner or yourself suspects that your child has a severe issue with their eyes, you can receive a referral to make an appointment with an ophthalmologist. Here are a few warning signs that may indicate your child may be experiencing a severe vision health issue:

  • Crossing or wondering eyes
  • Family history of vision issues
  • Showing a lack of interest in looking at objects that are near or far
  • Squinting excessively while reading
  • Unusually turning head while watching Netflix

Did you know that the leading cause of vision loss in children is due to an eye injury? Eye safety is just as important as maintaining healthy vision. In America alone, there are over 43,000 sports-related eye injuries, with children suffering most of these injuries. Help your child avoid becoming a part of this statistic by remembering these basic rules of safety:

  • Wear protective gear while playing sports, such as goggles
  •  Practice functional eye safety at home
  • Avoid using bleach products which cause 125,000 eye injuries a year
  • Be aware during home improvements
  • Nails are flying around – never a good idea!

Make it a successful year of learning and playing by getting eyes checked and following these safety measures above. Your children will thank you when they’re older for booking their comprehensive eye exam appointments. Please see the following resources for more information about your child’s eye safety and vision health:

Additional resources: