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21 November 2022

Eyecare Matters: How An Optometrist Can Save Your Child's Vision

We all want the best for our children and are willing to do anything to set them up for success; however, while we often focus on material aspects of their well-being, part of that effort should be dedicated to their eyesight.

The problem with kids is that they often don't vocalize when there is an issue. In the same way, when there is a problem, especially with their vision, they usually don't realize that something needs to be fixed because it has become the way things are.

In reality, they could be dealing with myopia, a common vision problem in which close objects are clear but far objects are blurry. Farsightedness (the inverse of myopia) or astigmatism, a common problem with how the eye curves, making it difficult to see distant and close objects.

The key for parents is to take a proactive approach to their child's health. That means looking out for signs that something might be awry and proactively taking measures to get in front of it before it becomes a more significant issue than it needs to; the symptoms could be vastly different, depending on the child.

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What exactly are some of the behaviours of which parents should take note?

  • Disinterest in distant objects and activities that require vision; this is especially true if they previously showed interest.
  • There is visible squinting or head tilting when attempting to see things like the television, signs, or video games.
  • Holding objects close to their eyes, such as phones or books, or a complete lack of interest in reading.
  • In their daily lives, they may exhibit eye rubbing, sensitivity to light, or poor hand-eye coordination.

One or more of these symptoms in your child should prompt an eye exam with an ophthalmologist. The problems listed can be (mostly) corrected with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Also, they should see a pediatric optometrist once a year to check for any changes in their vision.

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What other steps can parents take?

One often overlooked aspect of a child's optimal health is their diet. Fruits, vegetables, nuts, and fish—sources of zinc, lutein, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins A, C, and E—can all contribute to healthy eyes.

It's also worth noting that a healthy diet can help prevent conditions like obesity and hypertension, both of which have been linked to eye diseases.

Even if your child doesn't have any of the above symptoms, regular eye exams allow the eye doctor to spot any early signs of an eye condition. Parents often think a routine eye exam at their child's school is enough. But the only way to know if a child has a vision problem or eye condition is to give them a complete eye exam.

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Don't let your budget prevent you from investing in your child's eye health. LendCare's consumer healthcare loans can help you quickly get approved and move forward with appointments and glasses that can help your child confidently be the best they can be without being hampered by blurry vision or discomfort.

Get started today; it only takes minutes.