Vision in Children
The key to developing excellent vision as an adult relies on normal visual development in childhood. A child’s brain has to learn to see, just as they have to learn to walk and talk. Anything that interferes with this development, and the connections between the eyes and the brain can have long term consequences. Eyes that are not straight, have focussing errors, or any other scar or opacity in the eye should be examined to treat and maximise the vision.
Common Eye Problems in Children
- Strabismus – The eyes turn in or turn out. This may respond well initially to treatment with glasses.
- Refractive Error – A focussing problem, corrected with glasses.
- Lazy Eye or Amblyopia – The brain favours the image from one eye over the other. Treatment includes addressing the underlying cause and patching or drops.
Eye Examination in Children
We have a variety of tools and games to assess young children’s vision, eye movements and depth perception.
Most children will need to have a dilated eye exam which will also allow the testing of the focus of the eyes. The drops take 40 minutes to work, before the child is re-examined. The effect of the drops usually wears off over the next 4-6 hours, but should not interfere with their functioning. If it is a sunny day, sunglasses or a hat are recommended.