The advice below applies to parents/guardians of children who have been prescribed glasses by their eye care practitioner. We know there’s a lot of information below – but our little munchkins are important! At peoplespupils.com, we are particularly passionate about looking after kiddies eyes!
Why is it important that my child wears glasses?
A child’s vision is developing, and continues to develop up to the age of between 8 and 12 (although this can be variable). This means that the connections between the eyes and the brain are still being made. We can influence a child’s vision for better or worse during this period. If a child who needs glasses does not wear their glasses, the vision may not develop as it should and they could end up with poorer vision than what is regarded as ‘normal’. This can affect many activities as the child gets older that we take for granted, like driving a car or performing certain jobs.
How long will my child have to wear glasses for?
Unfortunately, it is difficult to give an exact answer to this question. Glasses prescriptions are dependant on the size and shape of the eye and, therefore, will change as your child grows. The prescription can decrease, increase or remain the same over time. As a general guide, most children who require glasses at a young age will have to continue wearing them for life. Only a handful of children are advised to stop wearing their glasses after a while.
Will wearing glasses mean that the prescription will eventually go away?
No. Wearing glasses does not affect how the prescription changes. Wearing glasses helps to develop the connections between the eyes and brain, and so enables your child to see clearer through the use of glasses. The aim of being given glasses is not that some day we can remove the need for glasses, but to help their vision develop to the best level possible. It is the vision that is of paramount importance.
When should my child wear their glasses?
Your child should wear the glasses all day to get maximum benefit, unless advised otherwise. This means your child must wear the glasses at all times, except when sleeping, washing, swimming and perhaps when engaging in certain sports. A few children have difficulty adapting to wearing glasses initially, perhaps due to the strength of the glasses they need or the feeling of glasses on their nose and face. If this occurs, gradually build up the wearing time with lots of encouragement. Children get used to glasses within 4 weeks, although most children are much quicker.
Why does my child claim to see better without the glasses?
This is a very common complaint in the early days of wearing glasses, or when new glasses have been given with a different prescription to the old glasses. It takes time for the eyes and brain to get used to glasses, and sometimes, it is difficult for children to understand what the eye care practitioner is trying to achieve. Persevere as this is a crucial stage of the management of your child’s vision.
Why are my child’s glasses so strong and thick?
Glasses are effectively tailor-made products. They are made specifically for your child’s eyes and so the glasses are for your child to look through. If someone else looks through your child’s glasses, they probably will find them to be blurry, as the glasses are not made for their eyes.
How do I know which glasses to choose for my child?
Your eye care practitioner will advise you which frames are most appropriate for your child’s age, facial features and strength of lenses. It is important (if possible) to give your child some choice in choosing the glasses, as this usually helps with acceptance of wearing glasses.
What do I do if my child breaks or loses their glasses?
If you child’s glasses get twisted or broken, or lost, return immediately to your eyecare practitioner. They will attempt to repair the glasses and, if not possible, replace them. Your child’s glasses need to fit well, and you may regularly have to visit your eyecare practitioner to have your child’s glasses adjusted to ensure they are fitting properly. This is not unusual and do not feel any embarrassment in having to do this.
When does my child need to be tested again?
Each child is given an appropriate recall. This is usually 6-12 months time. This gives your child’s vision time to respond to the glasses and improve, but not too long where a change in glasses becomes overdue.
We believe every child should be tested by the age of 4 years. Your eye care practitioner will be able to identify any major issues at this stage. And don’t forget to give our little ones sunglasses too!
Useful link: click here for important information regarding children’s eye care.