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R&D Protecting Your Youngest Patients Eye Health And Safety

Protecting Your Youngest Patients’ Eye Health And Safety

22 August 2020

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August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month. As summer comes to a close and families are preparing for school to start, this time is ideal for promoting annual eye exams for children. Healthy vision ensures kids are ready to learn in school and can meet critical developmental milestones.

Signs that a child has vision problems

Since children may not verbalize visual problems, parents should be aware of these symptoms to watch for:

  • Frequent eye rubbing
  • Closes or covers one eye
  • Head tilts or thrusting the head forward
  • Trouble reading, including a tendency to skip words and lines
  • Holds objects close to the face
  • Wandering or crossed eyes
  • Frequent blinking
  • Squinting
  • Headaches
  • Poor attention span or disinterest in reading and other vision-related tasks

These symptoms indicate potential vision disorders. Some common conditions in children include:

  • Refractive error
  • Amblyopia
  • Strabismus
  • Color deficiency

Additionally, about 3 percent of children under 18 are visually impaired or blind.

Children’s Eye Safety

Protecting children from accidents at home and during physical activities is another important consideration. Studies show that 30 percent of eye injuries in children under age 16 are sports-related.

Frequent causes of children’s eye injuries are related to:

  • Toys, such as those that shoot projectiles, can break into dangerous shards, or have sharp points
  • Falls from beds, furniture or stairs
  • Misuse of common objects such as work tools, utensils and pens
  • Exposure to harmful household products such as detergents, paints and glue
  • Sports that have a higher rate of eye injuries, such as basketball and water sports, along with non-powder guns, darts, arrows and slingshots

Here are a few ways parents can protect children from eye injuries:

  • Buy toys marked with “ASTM”, which means the product meets the safety standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials
  • Install safety gates at the top and bottom of staircases
  • Use locks on cabinets and drawers that contain harmful household products
  • Add cushioning pads to sharp corners on desks, tables and other objects

Recommend Proper Eyewear for Children

Using proper eyewear is another important aspect of children’s eye health. For sports, regular eyeglasses do not provide adequate protection. Protective sports eyewear includes polycarbonate lenses and faceguards. All sports eyewear must meet ASTM standards.

Children are more susceptible to the sun’s damaging ultraviolet rays. Only 5 percent of parents report that their children regularly wear sunglasses. This statistic emphasizes the need to inform parents about sun protection for kids.

Going back to school this year won’t be quite the same, as many classes will be taught remotely. With the increase in screen time, students will be frequently exposed to blue light. Although the long-term effects of blue light are not well understood, blue-light-blocking lenses can help prevent dry eyes, blurred vision and headaches.

R&D Optical Lab, an independent optical lab, offers a wide range of eyewear for your younger patients. We carry custom athletic eyewear, including prescription ski and swim goggles. For daily wear, the Bluloc lens is 100 percent UV blocking and filters out 95 percent of harmful rays (including blue light). We also offer BluTech lenses, which come in three tiers of blue-light protection. These lenses are an excellent choice for students who spend most of their day looking at digital devices. Please visit our website RandDOptical.com or call us at 513-273-4034 to learn more about our optical products, and how our old-school approach to customer service can benefit your optical practice. For more tips and our latest updates, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram or LinkedIn!

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