eye conditions affecting children
Children are not just little adults. They have unique needs that must be met to help them see clearly. What’s more, there is a sensitive timeframe for detecting these visual problems and solving them before vision gets worse or is lost for good.
Dyslexia and Learning Disabilities
Children are good at hiding things. Why? Because their world is really about seeing well up close. Seeing mama’s facial features while feeding is very important to a newborn. Little toys and kids’ books are all held up close. Face it, little tykes are not in tune for seeing things at a distance.
- Getting close to the TV (but kids like doing this anyway)
- Not recognizing faces more than 20 feet away
- Not seeing a ball thrown to them until right up close
- Covering one eye to see better
- Glasses (most common and easy option)
- Contact lenses
- Overnight corneal reshaping
- Atropine drops
Did you know?
Amblyopia tends to run in families, but goes undetected. It happens when there is a difference in the way each eye sees. One eye could have perfect vision, and the other eye could be quite blurry from hyperopia, myopia, or astigmatism. All that is necessary to prevent amblyopia is the detection of the difference in refractive error. Correcting the difference will result in equally clear vision for both eyes.
Poor depth perception
Poor hand-eye coordination
Inefficient reading capability
Patching part time
Cycloplegia to penalize the good eye
Glasses and patching
Contact lens selective penalization to the good eye
Did you know?
Strabismus is the term used to describe the misalignment of the two eyes. Esotropia is when one or both eyes turn inward toward the nose. Eyes with Exotropia turn outward. Again, it could be one or both eyes, intermittent or constant, at distance or near or both. Strabismus could be very subtle or very obvious.
Facts About strabismus:
- Not all turned eyes need surgery
- Visual therapy can be very effective in the treatment of certain types of strabismus
- Glasses can be prescribed to correct a type of strabismus called Accommodative Esotropia. The lenses relax the focus of the eyes and also allow the eyes to straighten automatically. Bifocals are commonly used to keep the eyes straight at near and overcome the additional focusing that causes more eye turning at near.
- Strabismus can occur in hyperopic and myopic eyes.
- Often children can be born with strabismus
- Strabismus can be acquired by adults due to hypertension, diabetes, or thyroid conditions.
- Strabismus can occur in the eye muscles that allow us to look up or down
- Can be the result of facial trauma, like a car accident or sports-related head injury
- Amblyopia can and often does accompany strabismus if neglected over time.
- Beware of invasive tumors or other growths that can herald strabismus development, also neurological disorders like stroke or myasthenia gravis.
Did you know?
Dyslexia is one of the most common learning disabilities that directly relates to language or the appearance of words. A child with dyslexia may have a hard time figuring out the meaning of words that are heard or directions that are given, as well challenges with reading and writing. Research has found that 70-80% of people with low reading skills are likely to be dyslexic.
common signs and symptoms
- Difficulty spelling words
- Poor sight reading of small words like was and saw
- Challenged with reading aloud
- Mispronunciation of words
- Reading task avoidance
- Problems with speech sounds
- Difficulty in building a vocabulary
- Confusion of letters, numbers, and colors
- Good math skills except on word problems
- May lead to behavior problems and low self-esteem, if unaddressed
Delayed maturation and development
Did you know?
Detecting children’s vision problems when they are young is the best thing a parent can do to make sure their kid’s brains develop properly and they do well in school. Kids learn with their eyes and the best vision possible is key.