You rely on your eyes as your primary means of learning and interacting with your environment as you go through life – and never so much as when you are a kid in school. But the sad fact is that many children in the US today struggle in school and with homework due to undiagnosed vision problems.
About School Vision Screenings
As noted above, poor vision at school is a major learning obstacle. Myopia, or “nearsightedness” (the inability to see objects clearly from a distance) is on the rise in the US. Today, around 40% of Americans have myopia, whereas, only about 25% suffered from this eye problem in the 70s. Additionally, the brain needs equal vision with good muscle alignment to properly fuse images coming from each eye. When that does not occur, one or both eyes can struggle to develop neurologically.
School vision assessments are a good start, but they may not be enough. They can’t detect all vision problems and are designed to detect potential problems so as to refer kids to an optometrist for a full eye exam.
The bottom line is that vision screenings help identify some eye problems and prevent some kids from falling behind. They are not intended to replace a comprehensive eye examination.
How Poor Vision Can Affect Your Kid In School
Most kids who have poor vision don’t know that they do. After all, if that’s the way you’ve always seen the world, you think it’s normal. You assume everyone else is seeing that way too.
Be on the lookout for signs your child may not be seeing clearly. Among those signs may be poor performance in school. Here are some examples:
- Not paying attention in class. Many times, lack of attentiveness in the classroom is presumed to be caused by attention deficit disorder. But poor vision can have the same effect. When a child can’t see the chalkboard clearly from his/her desk, staring off into space or seeming constantly uninterested and distracted is a natural result.
- A seeming learning disability. As 10% yo 20% of children have some form of learning disability, teachers may be tempted to assume your child does too – when low grades, difficulty studying, failure to complete homework occur. But it could all stem from a vision problem. Even kids with high IQs will get low test scores if they can’t see the page properly!
- Acting up. Misbehaving at school can have many causes. But it’s not always a matter of discipline and shrugging it off with a “kids will be kids.” Anger, frustration, lying about homework, and more may have poor eyesight at the bottom of it. Kids may simply not be seeing what their classmates are seeing.
If your child has been struggling in school, consider the possibility that he or she may be suffering from poor vision. To discuss the possibility of your child having a vision problem that is affecting his or her school life, or to schedule a full vision exam for him/her in Amarillo and surrounding communities, request an appointment online with Advanced Eye Care today!