Why Every Kid Should Get Their Eyes Tested
Parents ask me all the time: “When should I get my kids’ eyes tested?” I often tell them we see kids at any age if there are any concerns, but I think that every child should get tested before they start Kindergarten.
There are many reasons for this. The main one being that we want to make sure their eyes will be ready for all the work they’re going to suddenly do when they enter school. The visual demands on them will be like never before, and we don’t want anything to get in the way of their learning.
When we test a child’s eyes before they start school, even if there aren’t any problems, often we can foresee if there will be any inefficiencies in their visual system so I can prepare parents for the kinds of signs or symptoms they can keep an eye out for (no pun intended!) if problems ever arise. Simone, one of our optometrists, wrote about this very thing – see related content below. The reality is that kids don’t know what is normal or not normal, so often won’t be the first ones to tell you something is wrong with their eyes. Getting them tested means we can be ahead of the game when it comes to their vision for learning.
The other reason every child should get tested is because of certain eye diseases that kids can have lurking in the background without anyone realising. This could be something like a congenital (from birth) cataract or retinoblastoma (a rare cancer of the retina) or Coats disease (a blood vessel disorder of the retina). All of these can be invisible to the naked eye, but can be diagnosed with a visit to your optometrist.
So parents, we love kids, and we know kids love learning. Getting your kids’ eyes tested can go a long way to making sure that they’ve got a clear runway for all that fun stuff they’ll be learning at school.