So you’ve packed away the holiday decoration. Now it’s time to send the kids back to school. You help pack their school bags, hats and other school essentials. You know how important it is to make sure that your child is ready for the new school year.
However, don’t neglect this one other essential thing: an eye test before returning to school.
Not a lot of parents realise that children’s eyesight can change a lot from their last eye test. This is because as kids grow, their eyes are still growing too. That’s why it’s important to have an eye test done to make sure they’re school ready.
The importance of a back-to-school eye test
According to Optometry Australia, around one in every five children has an undetected vision problem, which may be hindering their school performance and self-esteem. If this is the case, why aren’t more kids complaining about their eyes? In many cases, kids will not complain because early vision problems are often undetected and kids can adopt changes to fix it (Squinting or moving closer to the board).
This is alarming considering that kids spend a majority of their time in school, and it’s even more concerning when it comes to younger children. In fact, the first three years is a vital period for language and literacy (urbanchildinstitute.org).
That’s why it’s important to have them tested regularly and to use the results to help make informed decisions about their child’s education and future.
An eye test can help identify any problems with vision that may be causing difficulty in school. It can also identify any problems that may need to be addressed with spectacles or contact lenses. By having your child go for an eye test, you can be sure they are ready to start the new year off on the right foot.
A comprehensive eye test does not only check how well your child can see (or visual acuity) but may include tests for visual skills such as eye teaming (or how well the eyes work together), eye tracking (or how well the eyes tracks text from a book or moving objects), eye focusing, and visual fields test to check your child’s peripheral vision. A visual fields test will check how well your child can see things on either the right or left side of their field of vision.
Before children start playing sport, it is important to have an eye test done so that appropriate measures can be given to help reduce the risk of injury.
It’s also important to make sure they are wearing the right glasses. If they need new spectacles, make sure to get them in a timely manner and are fitted well and comfortable. If they are not wearing the right spectacles, they may not be able to see as well as they should and this could lead to difficulty in school.
Kids these days are also often working on their computers, tablets, and phones all day, so your optometrist may recommend computer lenses to protect their eyes from glare and blue light rays emitted by digital screens.
Here is a checklist to identifiable classroom vision problems. This checklist can help parents and teachers observe if kids may have an underlying vision problem which can then be confirmed by a comprehensive eye test.
Make sure your kids are getting the best possible start in school. Take them to your local optometrist to ensure they are vision-ready for the new school year. If there are any vision changes, make sure to please bring this matter to the teacher to allow the teacher to take appropriate steps to help your child succeed in school.