If you are a mom or a dad, or about to be parents, we understand your worries and we will try and answer as much questions as possible, regarding your baby’s vision, and what is important for you to know from birth till adolescence.
We all heard the expression, “babies cannot see but they recognize shapes and patterns in a room”, and that is actually very much the truth. A newborn, is able to see, but since their brain and the eye-retina is still formatting associations and still developing, they are not able to recognize or focus on objects. This is possible only after the age of 3 months. You should not worry if you see, between birth and 2 months old, your baby’s eyes wondering at the sides or if they cross, but if you notice this continuing till the 3 months period, then we advise that this is checked by the baby’s pediatrician.
You will gladly notice at the 5 months of age, that your baby is very active and reaching to grab, observe objects, toys, pretty much everything in a room, and even recognize images and from afar objects. At this age you baby is seeing 3-dimensional and has now a deeper apprehension and point of view.
And you have made it to the 9 months of life and you are proud parents of the smartest 9-month old baby with the most beautiful eyes ever! Indeed at the age of 9 months, your baby’s eye-color is already defined and at the final stage. Do not worry if you notice slight changes by the age of 3 years old, since minor changes is likely to happen, especially if your eyes are colored.
In case you notice a wandering eye, meaning while the one eye is looking straight the other is not aligned but either looks upwards or downwards, and the baby is already at the 3 months of age or higher, then this is definitely a matter that you need to bring to your pediatrician’s attention. A wandering eye is a sign of strabismus, an eye-condition which, as per a study published on the Europe Pub Med Center (Europe PMC) site, in 2010, 2 – 5% European based children of preschool, kindergarten, and first-grade children are diagnosed with. Always be sure to notify the doctor about every concern you might have. It is their responsibility to run the appropriate tests and guarantee that your child is receiving the optimal treatment.
Children At A School Age:
Farsightedness is a common condition amongst children attending school. Of course not all children with farsightedness, at the age of 5-9 need glasses; on the contrary, at this age most children are able to concentrate and adjust their eye-muscles in order for them to focus and see clearly an object (or the board), whether it is at a distance or up-close. Since the eyes at a young age are still growing, farsightedness usually improves as time progresses.
On the other hand, if a child is facing a severe form of farsightedness it only makes sense that a child’s vision, can only improve through the use of glasses. Please be aware that untreated farsightedness can lead to more conditions such as strabismus. We always want to be sure that children are receiving the best treatment available, so it is significant that you do not miss any screening test and appointments with the child’s ophthalmologist or pediatrician.
Another common condition is nearsightedness and computer vision syndrome (digital eye strain). To somewhat assist your children not to develop severe forms of these conditions, we would advise to encourage them, taking their sight away from the screen (computers, television, any kind of devices with blue light radiation) or their object of concentration, every 20 minutes and advise them to concentrate instead, on an object far away from them (about 5-6 meters away) for about 20 seconds. This will take any discomfort, strain from the eyes and give your child the sense of relief.
It is very important that you know that 90% of all eye-related injuries in children of the age of 14 and onwards, are injuries caused during their physical activities such as gymnastics, football, their hobbies etc. This means that if your child is wearing glasses, it is actually more dangerous performing a physical activity, without appropriate protective equipment, such as goggles.
Normal prescription glasses, during their sports related activity, can either break, or shatter upon impact which could result to a very dangerous type of an eye-injury. It is recommended that protective equipment is used according to the sports activity a child engages with, such as polycarbonate lenses when playing football or basketball, full face helmets when playing hockey, full face masks when playing paintball, goggles for swimming etc.
One may think that wearing contact lenses should protect a child from injuries, but let’s not forget, that contact lenses if not properly maintained, or if the child has sensitivities to dust or has seasonal allergies, then the lenses can be the cause of many unwanted eye-infections
Some Advice From The Experts:
As per the American Academy of Ophthalmology there are some signs that if noticed they need to be taken into consideration:
Your child loses interest relatively quickly in activities, games or new learning experiences when these are related to extensive use of their eyes.
Your child is not following or frequently loses the position of a passage or a text, when reading.
Your child has to turn the head to follow their eyes, in order to see an object or someone that is relatively in close range from their sight.
What We Advise:
Opticsfit advises without a doubt, to always consult your child’s pediatrician for any concerns, and book appointments with a child-ophthalmologist in case it is required, in order for your child to have a guaranteed eye-care and treatment. Every child is different, unique and perfect, and requires the best attention possible and for this, no article online can provide tailored answers, rather than guidelines, and recommendations.
You should never skip regular vision screenings and appointments and it is better that you express your worries to the experts that know how to treat each symptom and condition, and ensure your child’s physical development.