Prevent Blindness declares August as “Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month.”
For children and young adults, the inability to see well affects performance in academics and sports. Vision problems are not uncommon among school-age kids and are often overlooked. According to Prevent Blindness America, one in four school-age children have vision problems that, if left untreated, can affect learning ability, self-esteem and social skills in school.
Children require many abilities to succeed in school and good vision is one of them. An estimated 80% of classroom education is taught visually. Reading, writing, chalkboard work and using computers are among the visual tasks students perform daily. A child's eyes are constantly in use in the classroom and at play and when his or her vision is impaired; education and participation in sports can suffer. Common signs of vision impairment may include:
Schedule an eye exam if your child experiences any of the above symptoms. Some of the most common conditions include: color blindness, refractive errors (nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism), lazy eye, and crossed eyes. “Vision can be restored and improved with early diagnosis of these common conditions,” says Dr. Shofner.
Eye safety is just as important as eye health. Every year thousands of children sustain an eye injury, which most could be prevented. Always ensure toys your children play with meet the safety standards of American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM). It’s also very important that children wear protective eyewear while playing sports. If your child should experience an eye injury, it’s best to not allow the child to rub or touch the eye. If a chemical gets in your child’s eye, flush the eye with water. For all eye injuries seek medical attention immediately.
Helpful Programs Available to Improve Vision
Prevent Blindness also offers the following programs to help save children’s sight:
Regular eye exams throughout our lives are important and having good vision can improve our self-esteem, school, career and more. Contact Shofner Vision Center online to schedule a comprehensive exam or call (615) 340-4733.