Kids face a variety of health challenges right from the beginning of their lives -- and some of those challenges include the potential for eye and vision problems. Just as you would ensure that your children receive regular checkups from your pediatric physician, you also need to schedule occasional pediatric eye exams at Andrew Stone Optometry. Our Columbia, Missouri optometrist, Dr. Andrew Stone, can screen for a variety of common childhood eye and vision issues, correcting them in time to ensure optimal visual and learning development.
Why Children Need Eye and Vision Care Early
Children don't come from the womb with fully-realized eyesight. It's more accurate to think of vision as work in progress, especially during the first few months of life as the eyes and brain learn how to communicate with each other and collaborate in the creation and interpretation of images. This process can be significantly impaired by a variety of eye diseases and functional disorders. When that happens, your child may struggle with blurred or double vision, inadequate depth perception, physical balance/coordination problems and painful, fatiguing eye strain issues. The earlier we can find and fix these problems, the more normally your child's vision can continue to evolve. Some of the conditions we need to screen for in pediatric eye exams include:
- Strabismus - An abnormal eye alignment that can produce double images and other problems
- Amblyopia - A condition in which the brain discounts one eye's data in favor of the other
- Tracking and teaming issues - Problems with both eyes following moving objects in unison
- Eye diseases - Congenital cataracts, glaucoma, tumors or other threats to eyesight
- Ptosis - A drooping eyelid that can partially block vision
- Refractive errors - Nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism
What to Expect From Our Pediatric Eye Exams
Dr. Andrew Stone follows the recommendation of the American Optometric Association in the scheduling of pediatric eye exams. The first of these exams should occur when your baby is 6 months old. We can observe how readily he follows objects, recognizes colors and other basic skills, while also checking the eyes for any signs of disease.
The second key pediatric eye exam occurs around the age of 3. Since your toddler can now talk to us, we can get a firmer idea of what he sees and how he sees it. We continue to check eye health and eye function issues, while also noting any potential refractive errors.
The third key exam occurs at age 5 or 6 when your child is ready for school. This exam puts extra emphasis on correcting any refractive errors that might inhibit academic performance. Older children should have an eye exam at least every two years.
Call Andrew Stone Optometry Today!
You're never too young for proper vision care. Call Andrew Stone Optometry at (573) 445-7750 to schedule pediatric eye exams for your little ones! We look forward to meeting with you!