It’s hard to believe that we’re more than half-way through the year, in the heat of summer, and many of us are still learning to cope with our “new normal” in response to this global pandemic. As we struggle with uncertainty about the future, it is important to stay positive and focus on the constants we can depend on.
August is National Eye Exam Month, and back to school season. While back to school may look a bit different this year, the value of good eyesight cannot be underestimated, whether it be for in-person or virtual classes.
It is important to remind parents that while vision screenings are an invaluable service, there is no substitute for a comprehensive eye exam by an Optometrist. Many parents are unaware that a child who can see 20/20 can still have difficulty with their vision in other ways. While the most common problem is refractive error, we know that there are many more potential issues such as amblyopia, strabismus, and binocular or accommodative deficiencies.
Many difficulties in school can stem from an undiagnosed learning-related vision problem. In fact, experts estimate that 80% of what a child learns in school is presented visually, and visual problems are often erroneously diagnosed as laziness, learning disabilities, behavioral issues, or even severe attention deficits.
It is our job as Optometrists to provide these children with the clear and comfortable vision they need to learn effectively and do our best to educate our patients on the importance of an annual comprehensive eye exam.