Have you taken your children for their eye exams lately? Kids’ vision is still developing—in fact, eye growth doesn’t stabilize until the age of 20. Even if your child has 20/20 vision, there are other aspects of the visual system that need to be maintained to support their development and success.
Correlation between vision and learning
Visual acuity is what most of us imagine when we think about “healthy vision”. However, there are several other aspects, as well, including focusing, tracking, teaming, and perception, that are imperative to children’s ability to learn. Each of these skills is still developing throughout early and middle childhood, which makes it even more important for kids to have their eyes examined. An eye exam could identify any issues with the development of the visual system, and an optometrist could provide you with the proper resources to help improve or correct the problem.
Without an exam to identify a lack of these visual skills, it’s possible for some kids to be misdiagnosed with a learning disorder. For example, if a child is having trouble with eye tracking, they could experience difficulty reading. However, their struggle could be misdiagnosed as ADHD or simply labeled apathy, which will only lead to more academic problems as the child progresses through school without access to the necessary supports.
Children won’t always know when they are having trouble with their eyesight, but there are a few signs that you can look out for. For example, if your kids are consistently sitting close to the TV or holding books too close when reading, it’s possible that they are struggling to see clearly. Additional signs include squinting or tilting the head, rubbing eyes, and complaining of headaches or tired eyes.