Vision is a dominant function in the growth, development and performance of children. 80% of what children learn is acquired through visual processing. This leads to a lot of parents, especially those who have small babies, asking: does my child have good vision? As a paediatric ophthalmologist, this is one of the most common questions I hear.
While there is no single, standard answer, it helps to understand a little bit about common eye related issues, especially amongst kids. The more we know, the easier we are to decide when is the right time to visit a doctor.
Eye related issues amongst children can strike across various age groups. Younger children are especially at risk, since they are usually at a pre-verbal stage making it very difficult for them to communicate, thus unable to complain if they are suffering abnormal vision. What is equally concerning is that kids in this age group typically never complain as they think what they see is completely normal.
A lot of parents mistakenly think that there is no way to figure out if their child, be it an infant or toddler, has vision problems. In fact, there are a couple of signs and symptoms you can look out for which may indicate that your child is having difficulty seeing. Note that this might not always mean that your child needs glasses.
To be assured of your child’s vision, he or she would need a comprehensive, painless eye examination which includes visual acuity testing, cycloplegic refraction, eye motility test and complete eye examination by a licensed medical professional.