Why are kids’ eye tests important?
Kids’ minds and bodies are constantly changing; we watch as their likes and dislikes change from day to day and as they grow seemingly overnight. The same can be said for their eyesight; the vital sense that helps them to navigate their ever-changing world deserves to be treated with care.
That’s why it’s important to monitor the health of your kids’ eyesight with routine eye tests. You can get your kids’ eyes tested for free with us, to ease your mind and ensure they are ready for the school year ahead.
Signs your kid needs an eye test
Although we recommend an annual eye test for your kids, you may notice some symptoms that suggest their eyesight has changed or needs attention sooner. Myopia is one of the most common eye conditions in children, and symptoms are most often noticed from the age of 6.
Some signs to look out for include:
- Rubbing eyes
Itchy eyes in kids can indicate a number of things. It could be allergies or something in their eye. It’s not uncommon for children to rub their eyes from time to time because they’re itchy, however, if you notice they are rubbing their eyes regularly with no apparent cause, it is time for an eye test!
- Red eyes
Usually, red eyes in kids can suggest a range of things, from as simple as them being tired to conjunctivitis. Usually, red eyes will go away with a good night's sleep or may need treatments from a doctor if other symptoms are present.
It is very rare for red eyes in children to be a sign of a more serious eye condition, but if you are concerned about your child’s vision, it’s best to get it checked out with a kid’s eye test.
Squinting is one of the biggest signs that your child needs their eyes tested unless, of course, it’s only when they step out into the sun on a bright day! If the latter is the case, it’s a great reminder to ensure your child has sunglasses for bright days.
If you spot your child squinting when reading, focusing on a task, or watching TV, it’s likely that they are manually focusing their eyes and may need glasses.
Headaches in kids can be an indication they need glasses, but also many other things, including when they’re overtired after a busy day. Pay attention to when your child complains of a headache – is it often after they’ve watched TV or played on the IPad for a while? Is it after a period of concentration on a book or other topic? If you’re noticing patterns like this, it’s likely your child may need glasses to help them when reading, using screens or concentrating.
- Difficulty reading
Have bedtime stories revealed your child’s reading level isn’t quite what you’d expect? Or maybe a teacher has highlighted that they need some extra help compared to others in the class? While sometimes it just takes some children longer than others to learn, your child may be struggling due to their eyesight.
An eye test can ensure your child doesn’t have an additional hurdle to overcome as they learn to read and move through their school years. If they do have an eye condition or prescription, we can correct their vision to help them thrive.
Glasses for kids
Kid's prescription glasses will be worn regularly so we understand finding the perfect pair is not always easy.
When choosing the perfect glasses for your child there can be a lot of considerations. Yes, your child needs to like how they look and feel, but as a parent, you also need to feel confident that they will meet their needs – will they survive a few drops from a boisterous kid? Will they be hard to lose for a forgetful one?
There are a number of options to explore, with some of the main categories being:
Metal frames are one of the strongest choice materials for glasses, however, they are often a lot thinner than plastic frames! They are perfect if your child is looking for a more subtle look, or is a big fan of Harry Potter! Their thinner material also makes them lighter, so children may find them to be less intrusive.
Plastic frames can bring a lot to the table, they are available in a huge variety of shapes and sizes, and they are definitely able to take a bit of heavy-handedness.
Although they are heavier than metal frames they can disguise thicker prescription lenses well and their versatility allows a bolder colour choice to be made.
Children are often focused on the colour or design of their frames when selecting their favourite, but as a parent, you want to ensure the frame you choose will suit them for the long run.
Round frames are perfect to soften sharp features, so strong jawlines and square shape faces will do best with round frames.
Similar to round frames, rectangle frames are best suited to faces they balance out – the contrast of the sharp edges works best with softer, round faces.
The best way to find out the frame that suits your child best is to let them try them on! They’ll likely enjoy getting to try on a variety of frames, in a range of colours and it can help get them excited to have their own pair of glasses!
Kid's contact lenses
Have you discovered that your child has an optical prescription that needs to be corrected? If you’re worried that they won’t be able to play their favourite sports to the fullest, or that they’re notorious for losing things, it’s worth considering the practicality of contact lenses.
Although you can get sports glasses for kids, contact lenses offer the freedom of a complete field of vision that won’t be impacted by weather or working up a sweat. They’re also near impossible to lose while out and about, once they’re in – they’re in!
Contact lenses won’t be the perfect solution for every child, they do require an extra level of responsibility and care that glasses do not, but if they’re responsible and you think they will be able to put them in themselves, they are worth consideration.
Daily disposables require the least care and are therefore recommended for children as they can simply throw them away at the end of each day and pop in a fresh pair the next morning.
Whatever solution you choose for your child’s vision, regular eye tests and help them maintain clear vision ensuring their eyesight is back to school ready.
Book an appointment today to start your child’s journey to clearer vision.
If you enjoyed this blog check out ‘Is my child wearing the right glasses?’