1705 Park Street ● Regina, SK. ● S4N 2G3
Phone: 306-719-2020 ● Fax: 306-719-2021
CHILDREN'S EYE HEALTH/
HEALTHY AGING MONTH BLOG
Eye exams test more than just your vision!
The focus of August’s vision health awareness month is the importance of routine eye exams in children. Kids should be evaluated at least every year starting at age 6 months of age. At birth, infants do not have 20/20 vision. It takes many months for colour vision, depth perception and visual acuity to develop. In fact, most children do not see 20/20 until age 6. The visual system (how our brain interprets vision) develops until age 9. Therefore, it is crucially important to have routine eye exams to ensure the proper development of the visual system, which starts with proper development of the eyes! Children often cannot express if they are having a hard time seeing, which can make it difficult for parents to even pick up if their children are having vision problems.
Subsequently, September is healthy aging month which promotes importance of keeping the eyes healthy. This starts with routine ocular health evaluations, typically every 1-2 years. Aside from having your eyes checked routinely, wearing sunglasses to protect for UV light and maintaining a healthy diet to provide proper nutrition are two important ways to keeping your eyes their best.
Healthy Development of Visual System
A doctor of optometry can check to ensure that your child is making the appropriate visual milestones with their eyesight. A variety of tests including stereopsis testing (depth perception), colour vision, visual acuity, visual fields (peripheral vision), normal eye muscle movements, and accommodation (the ability to focus at near) are important to gaining insight into the proper development of the visual system.
It is important to watch for the following signs in children: eye turn, uneven pupil reflexes (in photos, having red eye is normal but if the reflection is different between the eyes, that is abnormal), squinting, or bumping into objects. Kids will often sit close to the television because they like to sit close. However, if you are concerned that your kids cannot see the television from a farther distance, it is important to have this investigated.
Keeping the Visual System Healthy!
The best thing you can do to keeping the eyes healthy is going for routine eye examinations. Routine eye exams can pick up potentially sight threatening (and even life threatening) conditions. Early detection is key when it comes to vision, should treatment be required. As well, healthy lifestyle and diet can keep your eyes seeing their best. Food rich in pigment (carrots, green leafy vegetables, beets, peppers, etc.) are extremely healthy for your retina.
So, whether you’re a child whose visual system is still developing or an adult trying to maintain healthy eyesight, it is important to have your eyes examined regularly. You can schedule your routine dilated eye exam by calling 306-719-2020. Be kind to your eyes!
To keep your eyes seeing their best - grab your sunglasses and eat some veggies! And make sure you are up-to-date for your routine eye exam!