One of the most common questions our eye doctors are asked is “When should I bring my child in for their first appointment with you?” Many parents think the first eye exam should take place when their child starts school, but it’s actually recommended to come in for a first appointment before your child turns 1, and then annual exams after that.
Eye exams for infants are very important, and we make sure they’re both quick and easy for you and your child. During this visit, our doctors will check the basic working order and structure of the eyes to make sure they’re developing properly. They’ll also check that the eyes are working well together and that they’re free of rare but serious problems, such as cataracts and tumors that could hinder vision. We recommend scheduling your appointment before your child turns 1, however, if after age 3 months you notice any of the following, we recommend calling us to get in as soon as possible:
Between the ages of 2 and 3 our doctors will check for signs of developmental eye problems, like “lazy eye,” crossed eyes, nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. If we find a problem we can recommend corrective therapies. We also work closely with local pediatric eye care specialists if more aggressive treatments, such as surgery, are required.
Just before Kindergarten we will check for visual acuity and prescribe glasses if needed.
Once your child starts school, a yearly eye exam continues to be a must - kids who don’t see well, don’t learn well. Children’s eyes can change quickly, and before you know it, their schoolwork can suffer. The good news is that most conditions can be easily corrected, once they’re detected.
If you haven’t brought your child in for their first exam, give us a call at any of our four locations; West Reno, South Reno; Carson City or South Lake Tahoe, and we’ll get you in soon to see one of our great doctors. We’ll even have a treat for your little one when we’re done!
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