Parents often become aware of their child's vision problems when their child's grades begin to suffer. You can prevent bad grades by catching vision changes before they become big problems. Start by taking your child for an eye exam every two years. Here are four ways you can facilitate your child's eye exam.
1. Stay with your child.
Younger children are often nervous at the doctor's office. If your child has never had an eye exam before, they may be anxious before they meet the doctor. You can comfort your child by being present throughout the exam. The doctor can provide a chair for you to sit in that is out of their way during the exam. Gentle encouragement will allow your child to see that there's nothing to be scared of during an eye exam. When your child gains more confidence, you can choose to wait in the waiting room if you prefer.
2. Explain the exam to your child.
An eye exam features many strange machines that perform vital functions. Some machines will blow a puff of air at your child's eyes to test their ocular pressure, while other machines will shine a bright light into your child's eyes. Knowledge can make the experience easier. Explain the various parts of the eye exam to your child, or ask their doctor to do it for you.
3. Speak up for your child.
In addition to a vision test, your child's eye doctor will perform tests to ensure your child's eyes are healthy. The doctor needs to know about any discomfort or unusual symptoms your child has been experiencing. Children can be forgetful, and they may not remember to report relevant symptoms. Be your child's advocate during their eye exam. Bring up any medical information pertinent to their treatment.
4. Allow your child to pick their eyeglasses.
Getting glasses for the first time can be a big adjustment for kids. They may feel self-conscious about the change in their appearance. You can make it easier for your child by allowing them to control the process. If your child is older, allow them to pick out their own glasses frames. They'll need to wear their glasses every day, and your child will be more willing to wear glasses in a style they like. Younger kids may not be able to choose glasses for themselves, but you can still involve them in the process. Present younger children with a few options to pick from.
To learn more, contact an eye doctor that offers kids' eye exams.