How Are a baby’s Eyes Examined?
From birth, babies begin exploring the world around them with their eyes. Their eyes are continually providing information and stimulation essential for their development even before they crawl, sit up, or rollover.
Eye and vision problems in babies and young children affect and may even delay a child’s development, including hand-eye coordination, color recognition, and many other things. To ensure babies are developing the visual abilities, it is essential to have their eyes checked to detect any early problems.
Even if no eye or vision problems are apparent, Vision Associates recommends having your baby’s eyes checked at six months. You may be wondering, why so early? Your baby may hardly be crawling and making up their own words let alone being able to read an eye chart. Well, as mentioned, having your baby’s eyes checked early, allows for any vision problems to be detected and proper treatment to begin.
So, how exactly does a pediatric eye doctor test a baby’s vision?
During your baby’s first eye exam, the pediatric eye doctor will first ask if there is any family history of eye diseases, diabetes, or other medical conditions that could affect your child’s vision. Having an early understanding of what to look out for is the easiest way to help prevent, diagnose, and treat any underlying eye conditions. Secondly, the pediatric eye doctor will check your baby’s eyes for any signs of allergies or disease. The pediatric eye doctor is merely looking for any discharge or symptoms of injury or infection. Finally, your optometrist will run a series of tests that will evaluate if your baby has excessive or unequal amounts of nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, poor eye movement, or other underlying health problems.
How often do your child’s eyes need to be examined?
According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, your child’s eyes should be examined at six months, between three and four years old, around five years old before they go to school and every two years after.
What are the signs of common vision problems in babies?
Most babies are born with healthy eyes, and the presence of vision problems is quite rare. But occasionally, eye and vision problems can develop, affecting a child’s overall development. The following signs may be clear indications that your child has an eye or vision problem:
- Excessive tearing
- Red or encrusted eyelids
- Constant eye turning
- Extreme sensitivity to light
- Appearance of a white pupil
- Eye injury or infection
- Eyes not moving together
With pediatric eye care, it’s best to start early, not only to catch issues but to have an understanding of any underlying problems that may affect your child’s development. Call Vision Associates today to book a comprehensive eye exam with one of our pediatric eye doctors.