Why should I take my child to the opticians, especially if they have no issues?
Your child’s eyesight is precious. Without good vision children can suffer enormous setbacks to learning and the development of all their life skills. Just as children visit the dentist at regular intervals from infancy, it’s worth making regular visits to the family optometrist so your child’s eyesight can be tested on a regular basis.
What if they are not old enough to read yet?
It’s never too early to take your baby for an eye examination. A child’s vision is fully developed by the age of 8 so it is better to deal with any issues as soon as possible. If your child is unable to read yet, then shapes or pictures can be used instead of letters. If left uncorrected for too long some sight defects cannot be put right, but establishing a routine of regular eye examinations can minimise the chances of a sight defect being carried into adulthood.
Don’t they get tested at school? So I don’t need to take them too?
Only 60% of schools do eye tests now, as it is no longer mandatory. Vision screening checks can be carried out by Doctors, Health Visitors and other medically trained personnel, but these are not as comprehensive as a full eye examination by a qualified Optometrist.
Aren’t the styles very old fashioned?
Not in the slightest. There is now a wide range of children’s glasses available from many of their favourite characters, such as Star Wars, Peppa Pig, Moshi Monsters and many football clubs.
How much will it cost?
Nothing at all! Every child under the age of 16 is entitled to free eye examinations through the NHS. Should they require glasses, they will get a voucher which can cover the whole cost of the spectacles or be used to contribute towards the cost. Most repairs can be done free of charge under the NHS.