October is Children’s Vision Month

October is Children’s Vision Month and the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Optometrists would like to remind you about the importance of regular comprehensive examinations for children of all ages.

A healthy functioning visual system affects every aspect of a child’s development and learning. A vision screening during a pre-school check up is only able to identify a limited number of vision issues. There are many other visual impediments to learning that cannot be identified through a screening alone.

Children with visual problems may pass a screening test but still struggle with vision. In addition to fully assessing a child’s ability to see, Optometrists are primary eye healthcare professionals who are extensively trained in detecting and managing ocular disease. A comprehensive eye examination is not only an assessment of vision but a through exam of eye health.

One in four school age children have visual problems and 60% of children with reading difficulties have undetected or uncorrected vision problems. When you consider that up to 80% of learning is dependent on vision, the importance of maintaining a healthy visual system becomes clear.

It is recommended that children have their first eye exam at the age of 6 months, at age three, age 5 (prior to entry to kindergarten) and annually thereafter.