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Infant Eye Exams with an Optometrist: Why They’re Important

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As a parent, you want to make sure that your child is healthy and developing properly. This includes ensuring that their vision is developing normally as well.

Infant eye exams are important because they help detect any vision problems that may develop in the early stages of a child’s life. Many vision problems, such as strabismus (eye turn), amblyopia (lazy eye), and refractive errors (nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism), can be treated more effectively if they are detected early. Infant eye exams also help to ensure that your child’s eyes are working together properly and that they are able to track objects, which are important skills for overall development.

What to Expect During an Infant Eye Exam

An infant eye exam is typically brief and non-invasive. Your optometrist will use special techniques to assess your child’s vision and eye health. This may include using a light to examine the eyes, checking for any signs of eye turns or misalignment, and measuring the eyes’ ability to focus and follow objects.

Your optometrist may also use special tests to evaluate your child’s visual acuity and overall visual function. These tests may include using toys or other objects to assess your child’s ability to track objects and respond to visual stimuli.

In some cases, your optometrist may use drops to dilate the eyes, allowing for a more detailed examination of the internal structures of the eye. However, this is typically only necessary for older children or if there is a concern about a specific condition.

When to Schedule an Infant Eye Exam

It is recommended that infants have their first eye exam at 6 months of age. This is an important age to assess their eyes and make sure that they are developing properly. Subsequent exams should be scheduled at age 3 and just before starting school. If there are any concerns or risk factors for vision problems, such as a family history of eye problems, your optometrist may recommend more frequent exams.

In conclusion, infant eye exams are a critical part of your child’s health care routine. These exams help to ensure that their vision is developing normally and that any problems are detected early, allowing for the best chance of effective treatment. If you have concerns about your child’s vision, or if it’s time for their next eye exam, be sure to schedule an appointment with a Stoney creek optometrist at Perception Eyecare. Call/text us at (289) 309 -1090 to get your child in for their eye exam.

Written by Dr. Jasjeet Shinger

Dr. Jasjeet Shinger has an Honours Bachelor of Science degree and completed her Doctorate of Optometry with honours at the University of Waterloo. While attaining her Doctorate in Optometry, Dr. Shinger worked with a binocular vision and pediatric specialist during her clinical externship, which helped her gain a keen interest in helping patients manage binocular vision deficiencies that can affect learning.
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