Include an Eye Exam on Your Back-to-School Checklist

<b>Include an Eye Exam on Your Back-to-School Checklist</b>“></td>
<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Books, pencils, paper — all common educational tools one would find on the back-to-school list. Good vision, perhaps one of the most important tools needed to be successful in school, is often left off the list. The American Optometric Association (AOA) encourages scheduling a comprehensive eye exam for your child before school starts.

Why get your child’s vision checked? Good vision is a critical part of learning. Most experts believe that 80 percent of what a child learns is done through their eyes. Reading, computer usage and chalkboard work are all visual tasks students perform. A child’s eyes are always in use in the classroom. Therefore, when a child’s vision is not working properly, learning and class participation will suffer.

When children have undetected vision problems, school can be a struggle. Signs that your child may be experiencing vision difficulties in the classroom include:

* Trouble finishing written assignments

* Losing their place when reading

* Holding reading material closer than normal

* Having a short attention span when doing close work

* Skipping words when reading

* Turning or tilting their head to use one eye only

* Rubbing their eyes

* Frequently complaining of headaches

* Consistently performing below potential

The AOA recommends that a child receive a comprehensive eye exam at six months, three years, upon entering school, and every two years thereafter. While helpful, a school vision test or pediatrician’s screening is not a substitute for a thorough eye exam.

An examination evaluates how well the eyes see. It also measures the eyes’ ability to work together, to focus properly and to move together in activities such as reading a page of print or following a ball.

A visit to the optometrist could be one of the most important steps taken in helping your child make the most of his education. To learn more about children’s vision, or to find an optometrist in your area, visit

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