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What five signs tell you your child needs an eye test?


It’s easy for poor eyesight to go unnoticed in children, as they often don’t report it themselves. In fact, they probably don’t even realise anything is wrong.

That’s why it’s important to make sure you book them in for a routine eye test every year – or more often if their optician advises – and look out for these watch points in between. It’s time to play detective.

1. They’re getting close up

If your child chooses to sit right up in front of the TV, it may not just be a sign that they’re engrossed in their favourite show. “It’s probably that they can’t see the screen clearly from the sofa,” suggests Andy Hepworth, dispensing optician and professional relations manager for Essilor. “So you should book an appointment to have their sight tested.”

A lazy eye could develop into a squint. But picked up early this can be corrected

2. They’re closing one eye

Have you noticed your child covers up or closes one of their eyes when they’re trying to focus? That could be a sign they have a lazy eye. “If they keep relying on the one strong eye they will further strengthen it and weaken the other one,” notes Hepworth.

“It’s a case of the sooner the better for an optician seeing a child with a lazy eye. This could eventually develop into a squint. But the younger and sooner this is picked up, the more chance there is of correcting it.”

Have you noticed your child covering an eye up when reading? Is your child falling behind at school? It might be time to book an optician appointment kid with glasses.

3. They’re struggling at school

“If your child is falling behind with school work it could indicate that they’re having difficulty reading the board,” says Hepworth. “Similarly if they’re suddenly finding sport more challenging than before their eyesight might be to blame.”

Of course there are a whole host of possible explanations but poor vision is one that can be easily ruled out with a quick check up.

4. They’re always rubbing their eyes

“When our eyesight is poor, we naturally blink to try to clear our vision. This can make our eyes watery so we wipe them more often,” notes Hepworth. “If you notice your child doing this it’s time to book in for a test.”

5. They look different in photos

“If you start noticing that there’s a white, yellow or orange reflection in your child’s pupil in photos, take them to see an optician.
“On rare occasions it could be a sign that they have an eye condition that would need to be treated and again the sooner detected the easier to treat”.

Book an eye test at McGreals Optician HERE

Located in Blessington Co Wicklow, Baltinglass Co Wicklow & Portarlington Co Laois.

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