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Q: When should a pediatrician examine my child’s eyes?

Posted October 09, 2013 in Advice Column, Norwalk

A: Healthy eyes and vision are a critical part of your child’s development. The eyes should be examined regularly, as many vision problems and eye diseases can be detected early.

Routine medical exams for kids’ vision should be done by your pediatrician and start in their first year of life. At around the age of 3½, kids should undergo eye health screenings. Around age 5, kids should have their vision and eye alignment evaluated by their doctors. After age 5, further routine screenings should be done at school or the doctor’s office, or with the appearance of symptoms such as squinting or frequent headaches.

Some of the signs that a child may have certain vision problems are constant eye rubbing, extreme light sensitivity, poor focusing, poor visual tracking, chronic redness of the eyes or chronic tearing of the eyes. In school-age children, watch for other signs such as inability to see objects at a distance, inability to read the blackboard, squinting, difficulty reading, and sitting to close the TV. If you notice any eye problems, have your child examined as soon as possible.

Be sure to make vision care and eye checks a part of your child’s routine medical care.

Information provided by Tami Dickeson, Norwalk Nursing and Rehab, 921 Sunset Drive, Norwalk, 515-981-0604.

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