August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month, so let’s take a moment to provide information for parents and caregivers regarding how to stay on top of kids’ eye development and health!
Why Is Children’s Eye Health So Important?
As children grow, their eyes are still developing. That’s why children’s eye health and safety is so important; dropping the ball now can leave them vulnerable to eye infections and other eye diseases down the line, as well as damage their sight long-term.
When children have poor eye health, that can affect other areas of their lives, too. For example, studies have shown that children with poor vision can do worse in school and have a higher chance of developing a learning disability.
Staying on top of good eye health doesn’t just help your child’s vision. It helps them build a happier, healthier life as they grow up.
What Can You Do As a Parent or Caregiver?
Here are a few things that you can do to make sure the child(ren) in your care have excellent eye health, setting them up for ongoing strong eyesight down the line.
Regular Eye Checks
Be sure to get your child(ren)’s eyes checked regularly. Children of different ages need to get their eyes checked at different times. Here’s a handy list, so you know how often to make an appointment:
- Newborn: 3-5 days after birth
- Infant: During regular pediatrician check-ups
- Preschooler: At the age of three
- School-age: Every two years
What To Look Out For
Outside of eye tests, observe if your child seems to have discomfort when looking at lights or when looking at things far away. Similarly, if they struggle to read things up close or far away, this could be a sign they have something wrong with their vision.
Excessive blinking or eye-rubbing can also be a sign of discomfort, indicating that they should have an eye check. Remember that you can see an eye doctor more often than the times listed above, if it seems like something is out of the ordinary.
Protect Your Eyes
There are also things you can do to protect your child’s eyes. Keep them away from any sharp-edged furniture, especially when they’re small and table corners are at head height. You can also buy protective accessories that soften the edge of tables and chairs.
Make sure your child(ren) wear sunglasses when outside in the sun, to protect their eyes, and encourage them to take regular breaks when using screens. As a general rule, every 20 minutes of looking at a screen should be interrupted by looking at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.
For more information on how to best take care of children’s eye health, speak to a member of the Best Care team!
We are more than happy to answer any questions you might have about where to begin.