Pediatric Eye Care Q & A
Why is pediatric eye care important?
For infants and children, six months and older, regular vision exams can help ensure their eyesight is progressing and developing normally. Early detection of common eye problems allows for vision correction during childhood and can help to avoid developmental problems that often arise from having poor vision.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), poor vision is the most common disabling condition for American children. For nearly 25% of school-aged children, vision problems are significant enough to hinder learning.
This can lead to difficulty in school, often making social development difficult and hurting a child’s self-esteem. Early assessment and correction of eye problems can help to avoid these types of struggles before they begin.
What is the InfantSee program?
InfantSee is a national effort to offer free vision screenings to infants, ages six to twelve months old. This early assessment screens for common eye problems, identifies any developmental vision concerns, and allows for early vision correction if needed.
What does a pediatric eye exam look for?
During a pediatric eye exam, Dr. Smith or Dr. Gdowski is collecting information regarding your child’s vision, such as:
- Signs of vision problems
- Need for vision correction
- Presence of equal eye movement
- Ability to focus on objects
- Alignment of eyes
- Risks for future vision problems
Because infants aren’t able to communicate what they can see and younger children can’t read eye charts, your eye doctor uses knowledge-based observation and pediatric-specific methods to determine their eye health.
What does a pediatric eye exam entail?
Pediatric eye exams check many of the same things as an adult eye exam, but the methods for collecting information is slightly different. Assessment of a child’s vision includes:
- Patient and family eye history, from parents
- Visual acuity and eye movement using interesting and colorful objects
- Refractive status – uses a handheld device or photography to assess how eyes reflect light
- Eye alignment – covering one eye at a time and observing how eyes move and reflect light
- Eye health, visual assessment of eyes, tear duct, and other structures while child or infant is eating or resting calmly
Dr. Smith or Dr. Gdowski can glean lots of information about your child’s eye health during their pediatric eye exam, which they share with you and your pediatrician.
For expert pediatric eye care, call 616-457-0760 or request an appointment with Lifetime Eyecare.