With children heading back to school soon, parents’ to-do lists keep getting longer – shopping for clothes, shoes and supplies, going to the doctor for yearly physicals or checkups, and making appointments at the dentist, among other things. What is easily forgotten or put off is a yearly eye exam.
According to a survey conducted by KRC Research on behalf of Think About Your Eyes, about 60 percent of parents do not consider eye exams as a necessary part of children’s health checkup schedule. However, skipping these exams means children run the risk of being unprepared for school with an undiagnosed vision problem or eye disease.
While a cough or hurt ankle might trigger you to take your child to the doctor without hesitation, eye problems are difficult to notice without proactive measures. In fact, 84 percent of parents in the same survey admitted they wait for a child to complain of a vision issue before taking them in for an eye exam. Children, however, especially those who have had vision problems for an extended amount of time, aren’t always able to recognize the problem themselves.
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Although some schools perform yearly vision screenings, it is important for parents to know that these tests only gauge a child’s ability to see at a distance. A full vision screening from an eye care professional is needed to evaluate how well a child’s eyes function and how well they focus on items closer to the face. With increased up-close reading, such as that required when using a computer, this information is becoming more critical.
The American Optometric Association estimates that as much as 80 percent of what children learn – reading, writing, computer work and day-to-day observation – happens through sight, so it’s more important now than ever to have children tested by an optometrist. According to the American Optometric Association, by age six (before they start school), children should receive at least three eye exams.
If you find that your child does need glasses, the experts at Essilor offer these tips for selecting the right eyeglass lenses:
• Bright reflections and glare can cause irritation, eye strain, discomfort and damage to your child’s eyes. In addition to the right prescription, it is important to purchase lenses that protect against these visual distractions. Lenses such as Crizal Kids UV lenses offer protection from glare caused by sunlight, whiteboards, fluorescent lights, computer screens and video games.
• Skin isn’t the only part of the body that needs protection from the sun’s harsh UV rays. Choose lenses that shield the eye from UV exposure, in addition to taking other preventative measures against sun exposure.
• Just like anything else you buy for your child, glasses need to stand up to the test of time. Sturdy frames are important, but the lenses inside your child’s frames are vulnerable and need protection as well. Lenses that are scratch and impact resistant will help ensure a clear line of sight. Some lenses for children, such as Crizal Kids UV No-Glare lenses, also help repel water and smudges, making it easier to weather everyday wear and tear.
With the variety of options available, you can easily find the right lenses for your child’s vision needs. Visit www.Crizal.com to find an eye care professional and give your child a boost in the classroom this school year.