Parents always ask why there is a need to take your child to a pediatric eye doctor. The answer is that there are two types of doctor’s pediatric optometrist and pediatric ophthalmologist. Both types of doctors are there to treat your eyes and they examine, diagnose and treat eye diseases. They also prescribe your child glasses. They will also guide you to use your eyes well. The profession of both types of doctors is unique.
Difference between the Two: pediatric eye doctor
The two types of pediatric eye doctor are there for your well being but there is a little difference between their jobs. Ophthalmologists are there to perform surgery. They will save your vision if you got an eye injury. Optometrists are trained in purposeful aspects of vision. They are appropriate to use lenses, vision therapy, and prisms. All these are done to enhance the visual functions. All these intercessions are also necessary to improve the visual, academic and other abilities of the child.
Eye Sight and Vision:pediatric eye doctor
Don’t think that eyesight and vision are similar concepts. If we talk about eyesight it is the sharpness of the image that is being seen by your eye. On the other hand, vision is the ability of a person to figure out and focus on what is seen. Research has proved that children who have special needs do not have eyesight problem at all. They may have vision problems. These types of children may have vestibular difficulties; they may have some health problems. More chances are that they have motor delays.
American Association for eyesight has recommended that children must have vision examinations every six months. A good Pediatric eye doctor can check all the aspects of functions at very early age and if any dysfunction is found it can be improved with intervention.
Most of the schools in Europe and America are taking vision screenings to check only the eyesight of the children. They take it at twenty feet which are not a reading distance. In this way, they are unable to tell whether a child has a clear view at very near pong and who the eyes are working together. They can only provide only information which they need and that is whether he or she is able to see the blackboard or not. The case is that many vision problems remain undetected in this age. Their parents happily say that their kid’s eyes are 20/20. They should know what kind of visual skills are required by their child as a part of his wide-range eye testing. In this conduct, they can find out many children special need programs on the internet.
Vision is a learned Phenomenon: pediatric eye doctor
Vision is always learned same like reading, mathematics and any language. Your ability to interpret what is seen by your eye begins with your birth. In their development phase, all the infants learn how to work as a team, and how to maintain focus. When they grow up as toddlers they use their movements to drive the vision. After that, all the children can visualize without making any movement. So if you want your children to be successful at school their vision should direct their actions in most purposeful manner. A good pediatric eye doctor will guide you properly how to get that success for your child by improving their vision.
Vision is a most important Sense
You have heard about many individual learning styles. Often you have seen a mother saying that her child is a kinesthetic learner. Here she means that her children are still getting the information about this world through his movement and touch skills. If we talk about development point of view, this style is very prehistoric in getting the information through vision. All the individuals whom we call as well-functioned can store their sensory images and if needed they can visualize and fetch them anytime. To experience their surroundings and world they don’t have to move or to touch. Through powerful vision, they can improve their thinking, listening, organizing, and actions.
Vision Builds the Foundation of Language and Relationships
Vision plays a very important role in developing your language skills and emotions. There are many children in this world who have the problems like language delay, deficit attention, and development disorders. These all are because of an unimproved visual system. Notice daily and if you find that your child is not speaking well or relating thing then do visit an experienced pediatric eye doctor because his vision evaluation is very necessary to diagnose things at the early stage.
A pediatric eye doctor will guide you about much pleasure activity you can perform at home. These therapies can be done at daycare. If you are going to combine all the things like touch, movement, and socializing then it will benefit you in many areas. You will get many ideas about vision therapies for your toddlers and pre-verbal children on the internet also.
Make a Right Choice at Right Time
There ismuch evidence in the world that has proved that significant interventions like vision therapies always work and show positive results. If you are noticing that your child has developmental delays then pediatric eye doctor will be there to evaluate your child and even the most difficult non-verbal Childs.
Role of Pediatric Eye Doctor in Improving Child’s Learning and Behavior Skills
All pediatric eye doctors are well trained to detect many eye diseases like binoculars visions and convergence, and performing refraction. They can also perform the process of fitting eyeglasses and contact lenses. They specialize in many fields like sports vision, functional vision, and geriatrics. These specialists will help you to treat your functional and developmental vision problems. Neuro-optometrists will give their services to all those people who have visual disturbance and neurological issues. If they are unable to detect any kind of vision problem then they will suggest you take your child to any psychiatrist. He can explain your child’s symptoms in good manner.
One think that you have to remember is that if your child develops any problem during reading then it is possible that he has visual problems. In this case, no psychologist and psychiatrist are required. The pediatric eye doctor will perform eye testing and will give you assistance to solve vision problems.
Understanding Different Functions of Pediatric Eye Doctors
In the development phase of kids, healthy eyes play a very important role. A regular eye examination is very important to detect many eye problems at a very early stage. As a parent, it is your moral duty to make the vision and eye sight check ups a part of your child’s routine medical care. You can be confused by different names of the doctors as they perform different functions. We will eliminate your confusion here by describing their name and functions properly.
- Ophthalmologists are medical doctors and their function is to provide best and comprehensive medical eye care through medicine and surgery if needed.
- Pediatric Ophthalmologists are also doctors but they specialize in treating eye problems of kids.
- Optometrists have the same functions like Ophthalmologists but they can not perform your eye surgery. Some of them specialize in kids eye problems.
- Opticians are not doctors and their function is to fit and adjust eyeglasses.
What is Included in Pediatric Eye Exam?
A pediatric eye doctor will perform a routine medical examination of your kid and include following things.
- When a new baby is born it is completely checked for general eye health by a family eye doctor present in the nursery or by an experienced Pediatric eye doctor.
- All those new babies who are born premature or they have any family history of eye problems should be examined by eye doctors.
- Some people have obvious eye regularities so they must visit an eye specialist.
- During the first year, all the infants should be taken to eye doctors for routine screening of healthy eyes.
- When the kids are around 3 ½ old they should be taken to Pediatric doctor for acuity test in which the sharpness of their vision is tested.
- At the age of 5, all the kids should have their eye alignment test.
- After routine checkups, at the age of 5, a screening test is done at the school level. It the kid has frequent headaches and squinting then eye checkup is a must. Many times teacher notice that child is not seeing well in the class. If it happens they should immediately inform their parents.
- Kids have vision changes if they are wearing glasses or contact lenses. They should have annual checkups to screen their vision.
Importance of Pediatric Eye Doctor for Vision Therapy
In vision care, vision therapy is one of the most notorious topics. Some pediatric eye doctors are well experienced and they can explain its benefits in a proper manner. Said therapy has potential benefits for your children. Vision therapy is supervised by an eye doctor and it is a program which is non-surgical and it has some customized visual activities. The purpose of all these activities is to correct vision problems and to improve vision skills.
The aim of visual therapy is to make a visual system to correct itself. Eyeglasses and contact lenses can recompense for visual problems and same is the case with eye surgery. It usually changes the anatomy of the eye and its surrounded muscles. For a vision system, Vision therapy is jut like a physical exercise. The therapy consists of eyes and some parts of the brain that are responsible for controlling vision.
While performing visual therapies, a pediatric eye doctor can use lenses, prisms, computer added activities and filters. They can also use balance boards, non-computerized visual instruments etc. all these things play a vital role in performing vision therapy.
One thing to remember here is that vision therapy is not confined to an above-mentioned list of tools and equipment. It is a broader term. For a successful therapy, the determination of eye doctor and the patient is very important. In the case of a child, parent’s dedication plays an important role to get positive results. The main goal of vision therapy is to help people who have the vision problem to get a clear and comfortable vision with the help of glasses, surgery and contact lenses. It is a proven study that vision problem can improve many problems like reading in school children. It is also helpful in reducing eye strain and other computer vision syndromes. These problems are experienced by many children and adults.
Explaining Orthoptics and Visual Therapy
Another name for vision therapy is visual therapy. You can also call it vision training, or simply VT. There is also another name associated with this term known as Orthoptics. It means straightening you eyes. In previous years there were very few techniques used for straightening eyes muscles and alignment of eyes. It is basically done to optimize the whole visual system. Parts of the brain that control vision are also included in this process. Orthoptics is not similar to vision therapy as it is a broader term used to solve a wide range of eye problems. Vision therapy changes reflexive behaviors in order to bring a long lasting cure.
Concept behind Optometric Vision Therapy
Most of the vision therapies that are being performed all around the world are carefully monitored by optometrists. This is the reason it is called as optometric vision therapy. Those pediatric eye doctors who specialized in children vision are called as behavioral or developmental optometric.
There is a Science behind Vision Therapy
It is an old saying and you have heard it that “you can not teach an old dog a new trick”. A study was conducted in the field of neurology and it was proved that this case is not true when we talk about the human brain. But the thing is that it requires some time and effort as mentioned previous that dedication and consistency are required to get good and quick results. The human brain has the ability to change its functions when it encounters any stimuli from outside. All these changes are taught during early childhood.
A study was conducted on typists who were n training for long to improve their typing skills. They developed an increase in gray material volume in their brain. It shows that learning affects brain functions as well as its structure. If many vision therapies are performed for many yearsit can cause neurological changes to improve vision and visual performance.
What Problems can be cured through Vision Therapy?
With vision therapy, a pediatric eye doctor can cure many diseases in children. One disease is called Lazy eye. It is due to vision development problem. In this disease,the eye can not have normal visual perception. One disease called Strabismus is also cured through vision Therapy. A successful therapy, in this case, depends upon the magnitude and direction of eye turn. Another form of strabismus called convergence insufficiency is also treated with it. In this disease, you can not maintain the alignment of the eye while reading and looking at distant things. Eye strains and eye fatigue during work and reading can also be cured through VT. Doctors can improve the movement of the eye during reading and close up works. Focusing on near and far objects can also be improved through this process. If your child is suffering from perceptual disorders, disabilities related to development then it can be improved through VT.
What can not be cured?
Never confuse yourself with vision therapy and self-conducted vision improvement programs. They usually promise that you will throw away your glasses by performing a set of activities on daily basis. These activities do not have any endorsement from a medical body or by a pediatric eye doctor. And also it is notable that there is research that proves that people have cured diseases like nearsightedness and other optical errors. If an eye doctor has recommended you a Pencil push-up program to perform at home, even this program is not considered as a full vision therapy program. In this activity, a person has to place a pencil at an arm’s length. Then he has to move the pencil slowly towards his eyes to focus completely on words. This task is recommended to people who have eye strains.
A study was conducted and it was found that an experienced pediatric doctor can recommend Pencil push-ups to children as a home-based exercise that is cheap for convergence insufficiency. To solve vision problem an in-office program that is well supervised and orthotics exercises are very necessary. This is the most efficient treatment of vision problems that is non-surgical.
Improving Sports Vision
When we talk about sports vision then it is to be cleared that it is not a vision therapy. It just has a few characteristics of vision Therapy. Pediatric eye doctors sometimes specialize in this field and conduct many customized training programs for children and elders who want to improve their skills regarding vision in particular sports. Many sportsman and athletes have joined these training programs to improve their vision. Rather than correcting the vision problems these programs and training are conducted to enhance the visual skills of a sportsman. This term is also known as vision therapy. Both vision therapy and sports vision training have some common techniques.
Effectiveness of Vision Therapy in Learning Disability
There is a strong relationship between vision problems and learning disabilities and many pediatric eye doctors have different opinions about it. Many doctors consider it as a part of vision therapy to treat many learning disabilities. They strongly believe that children with learning and reading problems may have a vision problem. They also support the fact that many learning related problems caused by vision can be solved with optometric vision therapy. With this approach, doctors can improve child’s overall learning capacity in a proper way. This approach is true for some ophthalmologists. On the other and some think that performing only vision therapy is insufficient in treating any learning problem. They also say that there is no scientific evidence that has proved that many learning disabilities can be solved through vision therapy.
Taking the First Step
If you are observing that your child is not performing well in his class then the first step you have to take is to take him to a pediatric eye doctor to perform a routine eye examination and to check out nearsightedness and farsightedness. If the doctor suggests that no eye glasses is required or no change is required in present eye glasses. Also, each eye has 20/20 acuity then there many be chances that vision problem is existing in him. The eye chart used by doctors to test routine eyesight of a person is not considered to be sufficient to check all aspects of his visual performance. If you want to have a thorough examination of your children’s vision including all the tests necessary to check vision problems and sufficient reading and learning then a comprehensive eye examination is required which is being performed by a specialized optometrist having expertise in binocular vision, vision development, and vision Therapy.
All the examination processes that are used to diagnose problems related to non-refractions are different from routine eye examinations that are being performed by most of the optometrists. These tests are longer in time span and they consist of a number of other tests included in it. They can be eye teaming, focusing, depth perception, visual motor, movement of the eye and other visual perceptual skills. At the end of the test, you will get a detailed assessment of your child’s vision from the doctor describing all of his visual skills.
If the report suggests any visual problem that exists in him and the doctor is suggesting a vision therapy program then you have to take complete information regarding the duration of the therapy and the expected successfulness of the type of therapy being performed. If you are very keen then also ask your pediatric eye doctor about all the criteria’s that are being used to define success rates. In the end, you have to ask about the cost of the therapy. Many health insurance policies and vision insurance policies cover the cost of these therapies. But in some cases, it is not covered as a benefit in your insurance program.
Finding an appropriate Doctor to Treat Low Vision
There are many people in the world that have a vision problem and they are treating them from their eye doctor. Many of these eye diseases are due to eye injury or any other related problem. If your child is going through any of this problem then you can ask your pediatric eye doctor about the use of magnifier or any other low vision device that can help you in reading and be performing other functions independently. If the doctor you are visiting is not specialized in low vision then he can have enough information about all the aids that can be used to treat it.
Your doctor can suggest to any other specialized doctor that can prescribe you low vision devices and can provide you enough training to use them in everyday life. Another option can be to have an online search for curing your problem of Low vision. Google will provide you enough information about all the optometrists and ophthalmologists that are locating in your area.
Some Serious Signs That your Child is Having Vision Problem
In the new world about 80% of the children are being taught in the schools through visuals. It clearly means that if your child is having vision problem then it will be a big hurdle in his development. Always remember that all the children should have an eye examination at the age of six months, then at the age of 3, and after that regular examination when they are at school.
You will find that your children are having the vision problem if he is continuously sitting very close to the TV and while reading he holds the book too close to his eyes. It is also said that sitting close to the TV will ruin your eyes and it is a sure sign of vision problem. Your child is nearsighted if he can not see television images very clearly and e read his book by leaning too much on it.
Other symptoms can be that your children rub their eyes vigorously when they are tired and upset. Sometimes they also rub their eyes when they are trying to concentrate on something. It clearly means some vision problem is there. Some children lose their place when they are reading and they are using their figure to guide their eyes which word they are in their book. If your child does so ask him to read aloud and do it without pointing his finger on the word. If he feels any trouble doing this, it means that he has a vision problem.
Another man problem related to vision is that your child is sensitive to indoor lighting. She can not manage sunlight and camera flashes. All those children who have photophobia and they have extreme sensitivity to light can have the problem of headaches and sometimes nausea. This light sensitivity can lead to many problematic eye conditions. Some children watch TV while closing one eye. If he is frequently doing this then it is a symptom of having binocular visor problem. In this disease, both eyesfail to work together as a team in a comfortable manner. Closing one eye to concentrate on other activities like computer work can be a sign of having eye teaming problem which is also called as convergence insufficiency.
Some children continuously receive low grades in their class. If it is difficult for your children to see what the teacher is writing on the board then he has a poor vision. They will not share it with you and these results in getting poor grades in the class. If your child is struggling a lot in the class then it is your duty to take him to a pediatric eye doctor for a complete eye check up. The doctor will suggest eyeglasses or contact lanes for him.
Many children are suffering from digital eye strain. That is why they usually avoid working on the computer. They can also take a break while looking at the thing that is about 20 feet away from them. If the symptom continuous then it is better to take her to a Pediatric eye doctor. Sometimes teacher complains that she has observed your child is squinting or tilting the head whenever she looks at the backboard. It is the duty of a teacher to move the child closer to the board for an easier view until an appointment to an eye doctor is arranged.
Some Useful aids for People Having Low Vision
It is impossible for a person having low vision to stay at home all the time. There are many low vision aids available that function well when you are outside. These patients can wear blue blocking lenses to absorb a blue portion of light even when it is cloudy outside. These lenses come in many colors like gray, orange, yellow and amber. These lenses also came in regular glasses and sunglasses. Some people use head mounted magnifier glasses that provide them automatic focusing. Instead of using a handheld telescope this device is easy to handle and provide many functions like automatic focusing, intermediate, near and distance vision. So you can manage every situation when you are outside.
These automatic magnifiers have a control unit and a chargeable battery. Due to this, they are easy to use in stress, libraries, and streets. They provide a deep perception which you can not get through other magnifiers available in the market. There are many aids available for people that are completely blind and for people who walk with trouble. Canes are used for this purpose and they will help you if you have night blindness. They will also help you keeping your balance while walking in unpaved areas.