Visionary Eye Center

Warning Signs of Vision Problems in Babies and Children

By ocgdev
March 1, 2021

Children and infants aren’t exempt from experiencing vision problems. Like adults, children can suffer from a variety of eye conditions including amblyopia, strabismus, and refractive errors such as nearsightedness and farsightedness. Genetic diseases such as glaucoma and cataracts may also affect children at a very young age. Thankfully, with regular vision checks, your child’s eyesight difficulties can be detected and treated early on. Start by learning the signs of vision problems in babies and children so you and your pediatrician can refer to an optometrist and rectify the situation before it gets out of control. 

Myopia Treatment Reno

Common Ages to Have Your Child’s Vision Examined 

Eye exams should be done by your optometrist regularly. Unfortunately, pediatrician screenings aren’t designed to detect the subtle signs of early disease or vision problems. So, just like it is important to have your child see the dentist early, so too is it important to bring your child to an eye care professional at the following ages even if nothing seems wrong:

  • Right after birth: Newborn’s eyes are examined in the hospital nursery before they are sent home.   
  • Between 6 months and 1 year: This is usually the best time for your first visit with an optometrist.  Your optometrist will examine your child for issues with their eye alignment, vision, and health.  Using specialized equipment designed for infants they test can even determine their prescription.  Fortunately, most children don’t need glasses at such a young age, but for those that do, it is critical to get a proper prescription in front of their eyes to aid in the proper development of vision. 
  • Around age 3: As your child gets older their optometrist will be able to perform more in-depth testing of eye teaming and focusing along with vision and health testing.   
  • At the age of 5: At this exam, your optometrist will examine your child for any visual issues that may lead to learning difficulty in school.  
  • After the age of 5: After the age of 5, it is typically recommended your child be seen by an optometrist every 1-2 years depending on their unique history and findings.  School screenings have been found to miss 75% of children with vision problems, many of which have nothing to do with acuity or 20/20 vision.  As learning can be up to 90% visual it is critical for their vision to be at its best for success. 

All children who wear glasses should have their vision checked yearly at their annual checkups. At these appointments, it will be determined how the vision problems are progressing and new glasses or contact lenses will be prescribed if necessary. 

How to Spot Eye Problems in Your Child

Vision problems may appear at any point in a child’s life. Many of the signs of vision problems in babies and children will be easy to spot, but some may go unnoticed if not closely monitored. If you notice any of the following signs or symptoms in your child, be sure to connect with your optometrist to see if further action should be taken:

  • Constant rubbing of the eye or eyes
  • Extreme sensitivity to light
  • Poor visual focus
  • Inability to follow an object’s movement with the eyes
  • Abnormal movement of the eyes (also known as misalignment)
  • Chronic redness or tearing of the eye or eyes
  • Inability to see long-distance0
  • Noticeable squinting
  • Difficulty reading
  • Sitting too close to the television or computer screen
  • Whitening or graying of the pupil (which is typically black in color)
  • Fluttering/trembling motion of the eye - quick movement from side to side or up and down
  • Pus or crusty substance building up or oozing from the eye or eyes
  • Extremely watery eyes
  • Drooping eyelids

Some vision problems may have no symptoms at all. Commonly, amblyopia (lazy eye) provides no obvious warning signs, which is why it’s so important to have your child’s eyes checked regularly. Tests can be done to determine if an eye condition is present or developing. Catching these signs early on is critical as it can help prevent your child from suffering chronic vision problems. 

When to Seek Help from a Reno Optometrist

Visit The Visionary Eye Center

If you are concerned about your child’s eye health, or if you’re still wondering what are the warning signs of vision problems in babies and children, don’t hesitate to schedule them an appointment with an optometrist. Here at the Visionary Eye Center, we are equipped to offer pediatric eye care with the best options, treatment, and technology available. 

We have developed techniques and technology specifically for children of all ages. When it comes to your child’s eye health, being proactive is essential. Feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns about your child’s vision, and don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment with us today! Visionary Eye Center is your home for custom vision solutions, and we take pride in offering top-tier care for each patient.

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