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Posted on 09-30-2016
With the majority of a school child's day spent reading, writing, or working at a computer, clear vision is necessary for student learning and achievement. Yet, the American Optometric Association estimates that 18 million children will not have an eye exam by an optometrist by the time they enter school. Additionally, an estimated 10 million children suffer from undetected vision problems. A vision exam with your Katy optometrist can help prevent future problems for your child.
A preventive eye exam as part of the back-to-school routine is the easiest solution, as several states are finding out. In the past 5 years, 3 states--Missouri, Illinois, and Kentucky--all require mandatory eye exams as part of school admissions for young children.
Many parents may overlook an annual or biennial eye exam as part of the back-to-school process, but, just as we note the obvious changes and developments in our children's physiques and personalities, their eyes change over time as well. Eye-hand-body coordination, eye tracking, visual acuity, visual focusing, and visual perception are all assessed during an optometrist's eye exam. These visual abilities are essential elements to academic tasks, such as reading, writing, and visual interpretation, as well as physical tasks, like throwing a ball or playing a musical instrument. By visiting an optometrist on a regular basis, eye development can be tracked and monitored over time to prevent long term visual and perceptual issues.
Parents can also help protect their children's vision by watching for the following warning signs:
An eye turning inward, outward, upward, or downward frequently
Bumping into objects
Red eyes or eye lids
Frequent rubbing of the eyes
Turning or tilting head or closing an eye to use one eye only
Frequent eye styes
Avoiding coloring, puzzles, or detailed activities
Difficulty with eye-hand-body coordination
Avoiding close work
Holding reading material closer than normal
Headaches or migraines
Making frequent reversals when reading or writing
Using a finger to maintain place when reading
Omitting or confusing small words when reading
Consistently performing below potential in school
Regardless of the time of year, parents who notice any of the above warning signs should schedule an optometrist appointment immediately.
The value of vision is oftentimes overlooked, but several recent studies suggest that visual factors are better predictors of academic success than either race or socioeconomic status. If we are searching for the best way to pave the way for our children's success, the first step is a visit to the local optometrist.
We have two conveniently located office locations in Katy and Houston. Call either office today to schedule a back-to-school eye exam for your child!
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