The Importance of Eye Exams for Kids and Teens By Gordon Wong, OD on August 17, 2020

Eye chart with bottom rows of letters becoming fuzzyRegular eye exams for kids and teens are an integral part of your child’s wellness. At GW Eye Associates, serving La Jolla, CA, Del Mar, CA, and surrounding areas, Drs. Gordon and Wildon Wong perform extensive assessments to check vision and look for any signs of eye disease. The sooner that our physicians detect any problems, the better a patient’s outcome.

During eye exams, we use advanced technology to assess your child's vision. If any problems are noted, we offer various treatment options to improve sight. Our goal is to protect vision and ensure that children are successful in completing their daily activities.

When Should Kids and Teens Undergo Eye Exams?

The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that newborns receive eye exams to check for any abnormalities. While your child will receive a vision test at birth, parents should take their child to the doctor at six months for another assessment.

Children should have eye exams during wellness checks throughout childhood. Assessments are typically recommended every year from ages three to six. As children get older, they can go every one to two years. The doctors at our La Jolla practice will customize an appropriate schedule based on your child’s vision needs.

Why is an Exam Important?

Eye exams are crucial for children since Dr. Wong will check for any structural problems like cataracts, malformed eyelids, or infections. The doctor can also determine if your child is suffering from lazy eye or misaligned eyes, which can create vision problems. These exams can detect if your child is farsighted, nearsighted, or has astigmatism. When vision problems are identified sooner, the physician can provide treatment earlier to prevent these issues from worsening.

What Happens during the Exam?

Eye exams for kids and teens are similar to tests that we perform for adult patients. They are tailored for each age group to be more accurate. For younger children without verbal skills, the doctor checks to see how the child’s eyes react to light. Your child will also be observed to see if he or she follows a moving object or looks at a face.

To determine if your child is farsighted or nearsighted, the doctor dilates the pupils before using a specialized instrument to get a closer look. Using an instrument equipped with a light and magnifying glass, Dr. Wong examines the structures of the eyes to determine if they are healthy.

What Treatment Options Are Available?

Children with vision problems often wear glasses to correct eyesight. We can customize glasses to fit children’s smaller faces. Additionally, we offer a wide variety of frames to give children a look they will love. Teens might opt for contact lenses rather than glasses. Our medical team can teach them how to wear contacts and care for them accordingly.

If your child has more extensive vision issues, our doctors perform a variety of surgical and non-surgical procedures. We go over all options so you can choose the best treatment for your child. Some of the surgeries we offer include:

  • Eye muscle surgery for misaligned eyes
  • Cataract surgery
  • Corneal transplants

Schedule an Eye Exam

When you’re ready to learn more about eye exams for kids and teens, call our office at (858) 454-4699. Our team will schedule an appointment to check your child’s vision and eye health.

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GW Eye Associates

Our team at GW Eye Associates in La Jolla and Del Mar can provide a wide range of high-quality eye care services. Dr. Gordon G. Wong and Dr. Wildon C. Wong have over 45 years of combined experience and belong to several prestigious organizations, including:

  • American Academy of Ophthalmology
  • American Optometric Association

For more information about our services, contact our office online or call us at (858) 454-4699 today.

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