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If you’re wondering, “At what age should children first have an eye exam?” you’re not alone. This is one of the most common questions parents ask.

Your child’s eyes should be checked shortly after birth, before starting school at age three or four and throughout the school years as needed. Learn more about children’s eye exams at every age.

Start the school year with a kids’ eye exam

September is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month, and the start of a new school year is the perfect time to schedule children’s eye exams. An eye doctor can find and treat eye problems that could affect your child’s school performance. The doctor can also help you protect your child’s vision during sports and other school activities.

Why does my child need regular eye exams?

More than one in 20 preschool children has a vision problem that can cause permanent sight loss if left untreated. About 50 percent of all cases of blindness and 90 percent of eye injuries are preventable. Vision problems can interfere with performance in school or sports, and vision loss can cause lifelong disability. It can also limit the kinds of jobs your child can do as an adult. Regular eye care is important even when your child shows no signs of eye trouble.

What are the most common children’s eye conditions?

Child with amblyopia

Child with amblyopia

  • Amblyopia – Also called “lazy eye.” If your child seems to see better from one eye than the other, he or she needs a complete eye exam. (Amblyopia can also affect both eyes.) If
    amblyopia is not treated, it can cause lifelong vision loss.
  • Strabismus – In this condition, the eyes point in different directions. This might happen all the time, or only sometimes. Your child might tilt his or her head to try to see straight. If your child’s eyes don’t point in the same direction, see an eye doctor, even if it only happens part of the time.
  • Ptosis – A drooping eyelid that can block your child’s vision. Children are sometimes born with this condition, which can keep the affected eye from developing normally. If your child’s eyelids are not even and one droops more than the other does, talk to your doctor.
  • Myopia – Also called nearsightedness. Like nearsighted adults, children with myopia can see nearby objects clearly, but objects at a distance look blurry. Myopia runs in families, so if you wear glasses or contacts, your child might also become nearsighted as he or she grows. See an eye doctor if your child squints to see things better or has trouble seeing the board at school.

Does Oregon Eye Specialists offer children’s eye exams?

Every Oregon Eye Specialists clinic has doctors who treat children. Contact us or call 503-935-5580. With 10 convenient locations one of our clinics is always nearby to keep your child’s eyes healthy.

More on kids eye exams

Pediatric Eye Exams | When to Take Your Kids to the Eye Doctor

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