With summer vacation coming to an end, many students and parents are beginning to prepare for the upcoming school year. But between purchasing school supplies, signing up for fall activities and sports, orientations, and finishing up last-minute summer trips, many forget to schedule an eye exam prior to the start of the school year. In fact, only 50 percent of parents take their children under 12 years old to visit their eye doctor, even though skipping annual visits can lead to vision problems being missed in their early stages.

Making sure your child's eyes are in good health and are ready for the school year ahead is important, and scheduling a comprehensive eye exam is the only way to diagnose any vision problem or concern early on. Still not convinced? We've compiled a few reasons why you should add a back-to-school vision exam to your list of things to do before the first day of school.

Vision Dependence in School

Children tend to be visual learners, so schools rely on visuals to keep students engaged. If a child is having problems seeing the chalkboard, reading books, or participating in sports or activities, they tend to become frustrated, which negatively impacts learning. More often than not, children with undiagnosed vision problems struggle in school as they may not be able to keep up with the rest of their classmates.

School infirmaries do offer vision checks, but they are often limited in scope and rarely pinpoint issues in a child's vision. That's why the best way to keep your child's vision in check is to take them in for annual eye exams. This way, they'll be ready to hit the books without worrying about their vision.

Changes in Eyesight

As children get older and use their eyes more for computer work or reading, they can start to experience vision problems. Nearsightedness can develop or worsen between ages 11 and 13, so it's important to check up on this if your child is having issues seeing what's on the chalkboard or across the room. Other vision issues, like farsightedness, strabismus, and astigmatism, can also be diagnosed during a comprehensive vision exam.

Preventing Potential Health Concerns

Comprehensive eye exams can also catch any potential health concerns associated with the eyes. Early detection of eye diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts, and even diabetes can be identified during a comprehensive eye exam. Left untreated, these conditions can cause permanent vision loss. 

By scheduling an annual eye exam, your child's eye health can be monitored, as well as visual skills like depth perception and eye tracking, and will tell you whether your child's eyes are “school-ready and any potential issues can be caught early on.

Ensuring Proper Eye Care For Your Child

Check up on your child's eye health to set them up for success in the upcoming school year. Addressing and diagnosing any issues prior to the first day of school will not only keep your child's vision in check but also save them from frustration and headaches as the year progresses.

Everett and Hurite's staff can assist you with questions and any other eye concerns you may have. Schedule your back-to-school vision screenings by contacting us today!

Frequently Asked Questions

Does family history affect children's eye health?

Yes, family history can play a role in children's eye health. Certain vision problems, such as nearsightedness and astigmatism, tend to run in families. It's important to inform your child's eye doctor of any family history of eye conditions so they can monitor them closely during their annual exams.

What are some signs that my child may have undiagnosed vision problems?

Visual abilities like reading, learning, and participating in sports or activities can be impacted by undetected vision problems. Some signs that your child may have an undiagnosed vision problem include struggling to keep up with classmates, becoming frustrated while doing school work, and having difficulty seeing objects at a distance.

Can computer use lead to vision problems?

According to the American Optometric Association,prolonged use of computers and other digital devices can lead to computer vision syndrome (CVS). Symptoms may include eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, and neck and shoulder pain. It is important to limit screen time and take breaks to prevent CVS.