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Eyetests for kids - any opthalmologists around?

(25 Posts)
saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 17:53:21

Ds1 (5) went for his first eye test today. He had trouble reading some of the letters and this concerned the optician. He looked into ds' eyes and said he suspected astigmatism and was quite certain that ds would need glasses, but, as ds was not co-operating with the test, the optician said he would need to put in some eyedrops to relax the eyes and then test again to determine the power of the glasses. He said that for testing children they don't rely on the child's ability to read the letters.

I have never had any worries about ds' eyesight (well besides the fact that dh and I both wear glasses), and as a baby he would spot aeroplanes which were tiny specks in the sky that we had trouble seeing. So I was surprised when ds had trouble reading some of the letters in the test.

However, I just wanted some reassurance that the test of looking into the eye to determine how weak his eyes are is accurate in determining how weak his vision is and what prescription his glasses should be.

Heavenis Thu 22-Feb-07 17:59:18

When ds1 had eye checks at hospital the first or second appointment they put drops in. The consultant was then able to tell what prescription ds needed.

They sometimes used pictures or let ds point to the letter on a card.

wurlywurly Thu 22-Feb-07 18:01:23

same here heavenis. ds1 has his checked every 6 months now

Kelly1978 Thu 22-Feb-07 18:03:29

I'm not sure tbh. dd was prescribed glasses using that method. But she would refuse to wear them, now, she is 6 and has been retested using the reading method and has perfect vision. Hope you find a opthamologist to reply.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 18:04:53

thanks heavenis and wurlywurly, I'm just worried about him getting the wrong prescription. He was not really in a co-operative mood but it seemed quite clear to me as well that he was not seeing the letters clearly, but I'm not sure if that's because he really couldn't see them or because he forgot what they were.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 18:06:35

x-posted kelly1978. That is my concern. The teacher has never raised it and I have just tried to make ds read some words moving them further and further away and he was doing that OK. I will have to raise all this with the optician I know.

Maddison Thu 22-Feb-07 18:15:05

DS2 was 18 months when we first took him to the opthalmologist at the hospital and at that point we already knew he had an astigmatism. The first lady we saw held grey cards up with white outlines of pictures on, which got fainter, and she just watched his eyes as he focused in on the pictures (I think this was to make sure his eyes were straight). He then had the eye drops, which we were told were to dilate the pupil, these drops would also blur his vision for a few hours. Another lady then saw him and looked into his eyes through the lenses that opticians use on adults and there and then did a prescription for lenses for him.

He is only 21 months now, so I have no idea how accurate this way of testing is, the optician I use to get his glasses says that the prescription isn't that strong, so I'm not sure if it's precautionary that he's got the glasses, or whether they are the strength he needs.

Sorry for waffling on, I hope someone comes along soon.

Heavenis Thu 22-Feb-07 18:16:46

They should re test the eyes after he has been given the glasses.

Ask next time if they have a large card with the letters on so that he can point to them.

My ds was very shy and uncooperative when we first used to go.

Luckily after two ops for squints he no longer needs his glasses.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 18:51:56

thanks guys, the optician did say that we came at the right time as children's eyes develop till the age of around 6/7, so it's better if problems are caught earlier.

adath Thu 22-Feb-07 20:11:50

It is actually fantastically accurate because the optitian can look at where the light lands in comparison to the retina at the back of the eys because if this light is not landing exactly this is what causes blurred vision and he can tell how bad this is and with the equipment he uses is able to say how bad the problem is pretty accurately. This is more accurate thatn the better with or wothout type tests as this is useing actual measurements of the eye.

The drops will dilte his pupils he will get them in and they will leave him for about 30 minutes then do the test. Your ds may be a bit sesetive to bright light and have slightly blurred vision for a wee while that day.

Some children this age need glasses at this age but their eye strengthen and they do not need them later or you can be cursed with my genes and need them forever. My whoe family have astigmatisms and now dd 3 has started wearing glasses as she has one too and she probably always will.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 20:50:42

thanks adath, that's very interesting and reassuring. We are all very short-sighted as well so I was kind of expecting it but not so early on.

adath Thu 22-Feb-07 22:19:52

I always expected it too and like you not so early and was actually devestated when dd had to get glasses and it was not because I do not like glasses I love mine in fact I have 3 pairs for changes as they are so part of me that like other accessories I like to change them it was because I knew in my heart that she would always have them from now on and she most likely will and when young they can be a pain they are forever back at the optitian getting straightened out and that she was going to have to cope with wearing them all the time so early on. I have to say though she has rissen to the challenge and has been fantastic and she loves her glasses as much as I love mine.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 22:23:50

same here adath, I don't have a problem with glasses at all but I just feel a bit sad that ds' little face will look different now. He is quite thrilled, talks about wearing them, taking the case to school and was actually taunting his little brother who won't have glasses. But I also think they will restrict him as he is very boisterous. But, I'm just glad it's something that can be dealt with fairly easily.

adath Thu 22-Feb-07 22:44:24

DD is pretty boisterous too and we are never away from getting her glasses fixed.
The thing about childrens glasses is the quality of them is not the same as adults they are made to be kind of disposable as the so often get damaged. I would aks if you can get a spare pair too some optitians are roten and make you pay some will order a new pair and out them through a few weeks later as a replacement and you get them free.

saadia Thu 22-Feb-07 22:53:58

thanks for the tip - I do envisage a lot of breakages. Does your dd wear them all the time? I'm thinking ds will have to.

nooka Thu 22-Feb-07 23:08:19

ds got his glasses at around about age 5 (he is 7 now). He is a mad non-stop sort of boy, and I am amazed that he has not yet managed to break any of his glasses! We do quite regularly get them straightened out, but as this is quick and free at any optician, it's not really a problem. I remember my mother getting very angry with me for always breaking mine (I can remember wearing a pair with sellotape across the lens for quite a while!). I think that glasses today for children are made better, because they seem much more robust (they also look nicer). I was sad when he got his prescription (he is very long sighted), even though both his dad and I wear glasses, so it's not too surprising. It does really matter with children if you catch it early, because their eyes are still developing, and an early prescription may correct the sight. Obviously it depends on the problem too. We are rather hoping that ds has not only inherited his dad's long sightedness, but my shortsightedness too (apparently much more genetically related). Shortsightedness doesn't kick in until about 8 or so (all to do with how the eye grows) according to the consultant at the eye centre where ds has his check ups. Oh, and ds is dyslexic and still managed to do the tests, but only when we found someone who understood how to test children (he had two false all clears the year before he got seen by the specialist).

nooka Thu 22-Feb-07 23:11:08

oh, and it's weird how quickly you adjust to the glasses on their faces. I was putting some pictures up of ds the other day which were all pre-glasses, and thought how naked his face looked. However dd is now complaining that she can't see well (she has had one all clear, but I have booked her another check up) and I do really hope that it is a false alarm.

adath Fri 23-Feb-07 08:05:14

saadia yes she wears them all the time she doesn't have to wear them if she is out playing but she always does she doesn't like going without them now but I know myslef that when I take my glasses off everything is more blurred than after I have adusted to having them off for a while.
The optitian said just get her to wear them as much as his humanly possible but I think she realied herself how much they helped and I luckily never had any problems getting her to wear them.
And nooka I know what you mean, the playgroup pictures were taken 2 days before she got her glasses and she does look odd without them I am so used to them now.

saadia Fri 23-Feb-07 08:22:50

thanks nooka and adath, this kind of thing is so difficult when dealing with temperamental children. I just tested ds with some smallish letters from quite far away and he was able to read them. I'm glad the other test will be more accurate.

I actually think little children look very cute with glasses on and luckily (for us) ds has a few young cousins who wear glasses so that will hopefully encourage him.

Heavenis Fri 23-Feb-07 08:28:24

You'll be amazed how many children do wear glasses. You seem to notice them more when your wear them.

saadia Tue 27-Feb-07 10:57:52

Just an update - ds had the drops in yesterday and had his eyes examined. The optician asked him to read some letters, which he couldn't do, but then with the lenses he was able to read them. So I was convinced that he does need glasses. We chose some frames and the glasses were ready in an hour so he was very happy.

He is at school today so I really hope the glasses don't come back in pieces.

Piffle Tue 27-Feb-07 11:02:33

dd (4)has had extensive eye testing as her eyes are really not great. Dd is seen at aopthalmological hospital clinic. They use the dilating drops every time.

they will often try one mild prescription to check if it helps and go from there.
She has astigmatism, squint in one eye, nystagmus (wobbly vision) and is very long sighted
She has one heck of a prescription and we carry 3 pairs as life without them is horrendous
I have mild astigmatism and just need lenses for reading.

I think dd loves her glasses as they have improved her life so much, but most kids get used to wearing them pretty quickly.

saadia Tue 27-Feb-07 13:17:52

yes piffle, that's what the optician said as well. They have given ds a mild prescription so as not to make things look too different, but will review in three months when they may have to make it stronger. Ds is still getting used to them - he keeps taking them off, putting them away and then back on again - something to do with being Clark Kent and then turning into Superman.

I'm sorry your dd's eyes are not so great, but, as with ds, I'm just glad that we live in a time and place where they are able do all these tests and try to normalise such young children's vision.

adath Tue 27-Feb-07 13:26:41

Saadia dd had to go back in 3 months and get new lenses too. I am glad it went well and that Superman likes his glasses
The novelty will wear off eventually and they will become like putting on his socks in the morning.

saadia Tue 27-Feb-07 13:30:30

thanks adath, yes I'm sure he'll get used to them. The only problem is that when ds1 goes to sleep, ds2 wants to put them on because, as he says "ds1 doesn't need them now, he's sleeping" .

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