Pediatric Optometrist in Toronto
Pediatric and Children's Comprehensive Eye Examinations
Vision is one of the most important senses for child development. Research shows that approximately 80% of learning is visual; however, 5-10% of pre-schoolers and 25% of school-aged children may have a vision problem that, if left undetected, can affect their learning and development.
Young children cannot reliably detect or report vision problems and may assume that everyone sees the way they do. Thus, there often are not obvious signs or symptoms to indicate that your child has a vision problem.
Vision screenings do not always detect ocular problems and are not a reliable substitute for a comprehensive eye exam. Early detection and identification of vision problems is critical and helps with the treatment and correction of issues.
Common Vision Problems in Children
- Far-sightedness can affect a child’s readiness to read and may lead to increasingly serious vision problems if left uncorrected
- Near-sightedness can affect a child’s ability to see blackboards or screens at the front of the classroom
- Strabismus (crossed eyes or wandering eye)
- Amblyopia (lazy eye)
Pediatric Eye Exam
A pediatric eye exam will assess the presence of other internal and external health issues. The Canadian Association of Optometrists recommends infants have their first eye exam when they are between six and nine months old. They also recommend school-aged children undergo an eye exam annually. Fortunately, OHIP covers an annual eye exam for children up to 19 years old.
Eye Exams and Academic Performance
If your child is having difficulty reading, learning, or paying attention at school, we recommend starting with a full comprehensive eye examination. An eye exam may rule out any of the conditions mentioned above as a cause.
The next recommended step is to assess the child’s full visual skills and visual information processing functions to rule out other vision-related causes that may contribute to learning difficulties. Our vision therapy services may improve visual diagnoses found during the assessment. It is expected that a child’s academic performance improves along with their sight attained through vision therapy.
Eye See…Eye Learn® Program
Tonic Eye Care & Vision Therapy is a proud participant of the Eye See… Eye Learn® program. This government-funded program provides a complimentary pair of glasses to junior kindergarten children who require a vision correction.
Dr. Kelly (Sung Hee) Lee is a residency-trained optometrist in vision therapy, rehabilitation, and pediatrics, and has extensive experience with infants and children’s eye exams.