When the time comes to send your little ones off to school, they will begin to experience a greater demand on their visual abilities. In fact, the majority of what your child learns in school requires good vision, such as reading, writing and using a computer. If your child has an uncorrected vision problem, it could affect their overall development. However, children tend not to realise or report any problems they may be having, so it's up to you to spot the symptoms.
Here are 5 warning signs to look out for:
1. Sitting near the TV or holding a book too close.
Your child may look like they are deep in concentration, but the need to be close to something they are concentrating on can be a sign of nearsightedness.
2. Frequent rubbing of the eyes.
If your little one rubs their eyes frequently whilst they are trying to concentrate on something, it might not just be because they are tired; this could be a symptom of blurred vision.
3. Often losing place while reading or using a finger to track words.
As children learn how to read, they often use their finger to trace the words and keep their place. As they age, they should be able to read without the need to trace their words. Try encouraging them to read aloud without using their finger.
4. Sensitivity to light and/or excessive tearing.
If your child is sensitive to general lighting, such as bright lights indoors or sunshine, this could be a sign of an underlying eye condition.
5. Squinting or tilting the head to see the class board better.
Teachers should watch out for children squinting or tilting their head to help them see the board and report to parents so that an eye test can be scheduled.
If you think your child is experiencing any sort of sight problems, take them for an eye test as soon as possible. The earlier any problems are picked up, the better the outcome. If you have any concerns about your child's eyes or there is a history of squint or lazy eye in the family, it's important you do not wait for the vision screening at school.
Even if no problems are picked up and none of the symptoms described above are displayed, it's important that they continue with regular sight tests. Your child should have a check-up at least once every year, as problems can occur at any age.
We hope that you have found this useful and if you do have any further questions please feel free to contact our team of experts.