All Children Need Good Vision to Succeed In School
As your child grows up, one of the most important senses and areas of development for them is their vision. After all, their eyesight is crucial to almost everything in their life including learning. Nearly 80% of what children learn in school is taught visually. Your child needs proper vision to be successful in school. As children progress through school, the demands for their visual abilities to help them process information becomes greater. They are asked to read and write more, focus on notes written at the front of the class, and spend significant time in front of computers.
From the ages of 2 to 5, your child should be honing their visual abilities with games like block stacking, coloring, drawing, and assembling block toys. These will hopefully strengthen their current abilities while also developing new ones. However, according to the American Public Health Association, 1 in 4 children has a vision problem that hinders their ability to learn. It can sometimes be hard for a child to explain their struggles, so it is important for you as a parent to recognize the signs.
Signs of Vision Problems
The America Public Health Association reports that nearly 10% of preschoolers suffer from an eye or vision problems, but they don’t know how to properly voice their complaints. Parents need to watch for these signs that indicate vision problems:
- Constant Squinting
- Sitting too close to the TV
- Constant eye rubbing
- Holding a book too close to their face
- Reading with their finger
- Poor visual tracking (following an object)
- Light Sensitivity
- Frequently tilting their head when looking at an object
- Misaligned or crossed eyes
- Having trouble seeing the blackboard at school
- Reversing words
- Poor hand-eye coordination
If you notice any of these signs, it is important to arrange a visit with your North Arlington eye care center at First Eye Care for a comprehensive eye exam to properly assess and treat your child’s vision struggles.
Common Eye Problems
There are several eye conditions that can affect your child’s vision. It is important to have your child’s vision tested regularly as they grow and develop so that their doctor can treat them accordingly. However, there are some common conditions that frequently plague many children.
- Amblyopia (Lazy Eye) – This occurs whenever a child has an eye that has failed to reach normal visual acuity even with the help of prescription lenses. This can lead to crossed eyes. If untreated, your child may experience irreparable vision loss to that eye, programming your child’s brain with the wrong signals.
- Strabismus – This condition can often lead to amblyopia. Strabismus is a misalignment of the eyes with either one of them turning in, turning out, or even down. Once detected early, the eye will be patched, forcing it to correct itself. Surgery or special glasses may also help.
- Refractive Errors – Whenever an eye has this condition, the shape of the eye does not properly bend the light which leads to blurred images. Nearsightedness is the most common case of refractive errors, as well as farsightedness and astigmatism.
If you believe that your child has any of these conditions, it is best to schedule a visit with their eye doctor as soon as possible to correct the condition.
Treating Vision Problems
Some vision problems are far less serious than others and can be corrected fairly easily. Glasses are helpful fixes that children of all ages and babies can wear. Here are a few other helpful tips that can help develop and improve your child’s visual skills:
- Play with Your Child – There are countless toys and games that are designed to help your child learn and develop many cognitive skills. Memory games, drawing, block games, and puzzles can help their vision.
- Play Catch – To develop their hand-eye coordination, try playing a game of catch with your child. Whether with a ball or something small and safe, playing catch can help them align their vision with their body’s movements.
- Reading – Reading along with your child is a brilliant way to either recognize a problem with their vision or help them improve their skills. Read aloud for them and let them follow along on the page. You can even take turns reading the same book to make sure they can follow the words.
Whenever your child is struggling with their vision, many other aspects of their life will also begin to struggle as well. It is important to always communicate with your child to make sure that their vision is doing well. If they aren’t properly communicating with you about their vision, it’s helpful to be aware of signs of poor vision. If you feel that your child may have poor vision, call and schedule an eye exam with the eye care specialists at First Eye Care North Arlington.