Childrens Eye Exam

A visit to the opticians can be daunting, especially if it’s because you think your child needs glasses. But your optician is there to put you and your child at ease and usually they end up feeling its one big adventure. Whilst parents can be fearful children are often not. Nowadays spectacles are not seen in such a negative light with some children actually wanting to wear them. There are plenty of celebrities wearing spectacles and trendy designer names.

Eye examinations are important for your child’s healthcare and personal development. If children have poor vision they can find it difficult to learn at school, as well as enjoy everyday activities. They have no way of knowing if what they see is any different from others.

Ideally your child should have an eye test before his or her first birthday. This will normally be done by a doctor, as a normal part of your child’s post natal care.

The follow up tests are usually carried out by an optician after the child’s third birthday. This is an important time to get your child’s eyes examined as any problems can be discovered before school starts. A large proportion of squints, for example, develop around this age. It doesn’t matter if your child is too young to read a letter chart as a qualified optometrist can use a range of techniques and modern equipment to detect visual problems at any age.

If you suspect that something is wrong with your child’s eyesight you should make an appointment with your optician as soon as possible. Typical warning signs can be: excessive blinking, squinting, peering closely at books or TV, bumping into objects or poor performance at school.

If your child does need glasses you will receive a contribution towards the cost and we have a wide range of free pairs to choose from.

It is normal practice to supply modern plastic lenses for children’s glasses. They are available with coatings which resist scratches and block out potentially harmful UV light. However for even greater protection there are lenses made from polycarbonate which are virtually unbreakable, therefore ideal for children. These are available at a small additional cost.

Children should be involved in choosing their frames. They will find it fun trying on the wide variety of styles and colours available. Our dispensing opticians will make sure the frames fit correctly and are comfortable.

Is my child entitled to a free eye test?

If your child is under 16 the answer is an automatic yes. When they hit 16 it is still free while they are in full time education, up to and including the age of 18.

How often should I get my child tested?

It is advisable for them to have an eye test every 6 or 12 months (our optometrist will tell you which) but if your child is every complaining about headaches, the board not seeming clear or that their eyes feel tired frequently it’s best to give us a call.