Kids vision and eye health can be assessed at Peter D’Arcy Optometrist Bega.
Your child’s eyes and vision are so special ! Don’t forget their eyecare as well as your own eye problems.
As vision impacts learning often screening programs are employed.
Comprehensive exams are more likely to uncover all the relevant issues.
Every parent wants to ensure their child sees every opportunity to grow and enjoy and reaching their full potential.
Early detection is vital even before school age children tend to be examined if they have a problem reading a book perhaps.
However to perform at their best,their eyes need to as well.
Reading fluency is just one measure of good vision.
We have full ranges of children’s glasses to cater for any optical correction in glasses or contacts for that matter.
Babies don’t see much detail more shades of gray but within weeks colours
Within a few days after birth, infants prefer looking at a known face to that of a stranger.
At birth, your baby’s eyes are already more than half of their adult size but not as light sensitive
By 3 months should be following moving objects at this stage and starting to reach.
Infants are recommended for eye exam by 6 months of age where vision can be objectively determined and eye health established eg risk of cancers. Visual acuity improves from about 6/120 at birth to approximately 6/9 at 6 months of age. Colour vision should be similar to that of an adult.
Babies also have better eye-hand coordination at 4 to 6 months of age.Most babies are born with blue eyes because darker pigments in the iris aren’t completely developed at birth. Over time, more dark pigment is produced in the iris, which will often change your child’s eye colour.
If baby’s eyes are misaligned exam soon as possible is advised.
Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). This is the abnormal replacement of normal tissue in the retina with fibrous tissue and blood vessels. All premature babies are at risk of ROP.
Nystagmus an involuntary, back-and-forth movement of both eyes can be present at birth, or it may develop weeks to months later. Risk factors include incomplete development of the optic nerve, albinism and congenital cataracts.
Babies With autism have reduced eye interactions.
Their first eye test allows us to diagnose potential vision problems even if they are unable to read before they start to impact their quality of life.
Only 8% of Australian children aged 0–14 have had a comprehensive vision assessment in 2016, despite an estimated one in five suffering from an undetected vision problem.
Children often assume their vision is just like everyone else’s, which means that vision problems can easily go undetected even eye injury from laser pointers.
Poor vision can interfere with their ability to learn and develop.
Your local optometrist Peter D’Arcy has attended the National Children’s Congress and is a Member of the Australian Behavioural College of Optometrists ACBO and a foundation associate.
A developmental or paediatric optometrist that concentrates on the way vision is interpreted is known as a behavourial optometrist:
Management of amblyopia and strabismus (turned eyes)
Assessesment of vision processing skills
Vision therapy services
Assessment of vision issues of children and adults with learning difficulties, dyslexia, ADD, ADHD, Autism Spectrum Disorders, Parkinsons and those with special needs or who are developmentally delayed and those who have had a stroke or head injury
Vision is actually a skill that can be developed and improved through appropriate treatment. It’s important to note however, that addressing vision problems may only be one aspect of managing more complex learning difficulties.
Vision is responsible for around 80% of all learning during a child’s first 12 years ^
So protect their eyes and help them to learn by seeing as well as possible even before school age.
School vision screenings are not as comprehensive as an optometrist examination
We have a duty to ensure eye care for distance vision and near vision is balanced,healthy and comfortable as possible.
^Vision council of america, making the grade, 2009.
Have trouble tracking when reading; they lose their place often or they move their head back and forth, rather than moving their eyes.
Due to their impact on concentration, vision related learning difficulties can even be mistaken for other disorders such as ADHD.
Myopia is now recognized as a serious public health issue by the World Health Organization (WHO) and is projected to affect 50% of the world population by 2050,with nearly one billion in the high myopia category. The International Myopia Institute has developed clinical management guidelines including tracking software and calculators (eg Brien Holden Vision Institute, UNSW ) to illustrate and predict evidence based outcomes and strategies.
Of the fast and slow progressors in conventional lenses the aim is to get those that are progressing quickly (particularly if young) into a myopia control option.
The SV control group in the prism lens myopia control study were those who were all progressing really quickly.
If an individual isn’t progressing in a SV option special myopia control treatments can be avoided. The Brien Holden myopia calculator tries to estimate the progression in SV lenses that might occur, but it is an estimate only and not individual.
Progressive lenses sometimes can be used-
Studies show that children who spend more than 2 hours a day on screens, and less than 1 ½ hours outdoors, are more likely to become shortsighted.
Evidence shows that:
• Children who spend more time outdoors are less likely to be, or to become myopic.
• Increased study time of more than 2.5 hours per day can increase the risk of myopia.
• Half of children and youths exceed the public health screen time recommendation of 2 h per day or less.
• More than 2 hours of smart phone use produces greater chances of vision problems, and greater chances of multiple problems
• Most studies on the effects of screen time in children indicate that the odds of visual symptoms increase after 2–4 hours of use.
0 – 2 Years None
2 -5 Years 1 hour per day or less
5 – 18 Years 2 hours per day or less
Excessive computer and screen use has been shown to be associated with a greater risk of developing shortsightedness as well as increased symptoms of eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, and neck and shoulder pain.
Ensure Good Posture – device should be no closer than the distance to the elbow.
Looking away after every 20 minutes of continuous near focusing, and a physical break every hour for children under the age of 9 years of age is recommnded.
Stop screen use for an hour before bed time
Amblyopia, commonly known as a lazy eye occurs when the brain does not fully acknowledge the images seen by the affected eye found in about 3 % of children.
It is also the most common cause of monocular (one eye) visual impairment among young and middle-aged adults.
Amblyopia can result from any condition that prevents the eye from focusing clearly.
Treating amblyopia lazy eye involves forcing more use of the eye with weaker vision. Pairs of glasses may be required to aid focus,concentration and to avoid suppression.
Children and even adults whose amblyopia persists despite the recommended two hours of daily patching may improve if daily patching is extended to 6 hours. The brain’s plasticity makes the condition most treatable.
Vision development is a vital concern of any eye doctor.
Eye exams will detect eye problems including vision or lazy eye that require kids glasses or contacts.
Such eye health checks need to be ongoing from young children as well as measuring refractive error, distance vision,teaming and near performance
Erasmus Darwin introduced occlusion therapy for amblyopia. The Pediatric Eye Disease Investigator Group (PEDIG) Amblyopia Treatment Studies (ATS) including Monitored Occlusion Treatment of Amblyopia Study (MOTAS) have refined the techniques for treatment.
Chidrens Vision is often assumed is just like everyone else’s, which means that vision problems can easily go undetected such as ambylopia lazy eye.
Poor vision can interfere with their ability to learn and develop.
So for our kids be they in Narooma or Eden, Tathra to Bombala, Bega, Merimbula or elsewhere its one test too important to miss. A childrens eye test is often forgotten in eye care as young children will not self report their eye condition.Establishing good vision means identifying childrens eye and vision problems by thorough eye checks in an eye examination.
Kid’s eyes need protection, too. In fact, children are more at risk of the eye-damaging effects of UV exposure than adults. The eye of a child under the age of ten allows more than six times the amount of UV light to penetrate than an adult’s eye, so it’s never too early to start protecting a child’s eyes.
Children’s eyes are more transparent and the UVA, UVB and UVC can all penetrate deeper into the eye structure than an adults eye. Most literature is based on an adults eye that has had changes to the transmission properties caused by sunlight. A child’s retina can be damaged by UVB because the lens has only a small ability to absorb UVB, even though less than 2% of UVB is thought to penetrate through the lens of an adult eye.
Even if UVC does not penetrate beyond the lens, it can still cause damage to other structures of the eye. The conjunctiva is more sensitive to UV than the cornea and the skin around the eye can also be affected by the ultraviolet radiation
Many parents find that it can be difficult to ensure that their child is wearing protective eyewear, especially in situations when they may not be present, like walking to or from school and during recess.
Transitions lenses can help. They block 100% of UV radiation and reduce glare. And they’re available in the sturdy, lightweight, shatter and impact-resistant materials that are best for children.
Hundreds of thousands of Australians are immersed for too long in virtual reality headsets eg Google, Samsung, Sony.
Eye strain and dizziness can easily result as the focus and convergence are more dissassociated and may require longer and more frequent breaks than actually occur as the experience can be addictive for some especially children.
Nowadays the majority of children (even preschoolers) report digital eye strain when using digital devices and are found to have dry eye issues from inefficient blinking and blue light from screens.
Computer vision syndrome is now called digital eye strain because it related to all digital device use not just computers.
The Telsyte Australian Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality report predicts a quarter of Australian homes will have a VR headset by 2021.
At a minimum use the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break and focus your eyes on something at least 20 feet (6metres) away performing some clockwise and anticlockwise movements,stand up and blink completely !
Have your children’s eyes examined every couple of years as a general guideline. Kids glasses for permanent or part time use after regular eye checks to correct focusing and certain eye conditions can often help in a future child’s eye test and a child’s vision long term as vision to the children’s eye is so important for learning.
Genetics,environmental and social factors are major influences on myopia.
Evidence shows that time spent outdoors in childhood partially protects against the development of myopia and in countries such as China where the condition is rampant such policies are being enforced in schools.
In areas such as dyslexia bad advice or simplistic advice can abound for treating conditions such as amblyopia or visual dyslexia.
Vision therapy/training integrated for brain,eyes and body can be employed that specifically targets and enhances the quality of visual and oculomotor control for young children through to adults.
Children with peripheral visual deficits performed significantly worse on tasks that required visual attention than the normal vision peers and children with poor central vision (Tadin et al., 2012).