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How often do children need their eyes tested?

(20 Posts)
Cocoflower Thu 21-Jul-11 10:03:59

Does anyone know the frequency for getting children's eyes tested- is it every year or every two years?

My dd is 4 years old and her last test showed no problems.

Thanks!

brightermornings Thu 21-Jul-11 19:32:45

My dc's go once a year.

bluejeans Thu 21-Jul-11 19:53:52

It's once a year for anyone under 16 or over 60, every two years for those inbetween, so I've been told!

Cocoflower Thu 21-Jul-11 19:55:19

Thanks! So looks like eye test due! smile

SydneyB Thu 21-Jul-11 19:59:12

Quick hijack: I'd assumed that someone was going to come to the school at some point. They did when I was at primary about 100 yrs ago. DD, nearly 5, about Reception has never had one - is this something I should do before she starts? I am v. shortsighted as is DH but I don't think that has anything to do with it. As far as I can tell she doesn't seem to have a sight problem...

Bunbaker Thu 21-Jul-11 19:59:24

You should get a reminder, we always do.

Seona1973 Thu 21-Jul-11 21:01:49

dd had hers tested in Primary 1 (aged 5) and ds was recently tested at nursery aged 4. At the age of 5 they should be ok to go to the optician for a test - ring beforehand and see if they deal with children. DD has regular tests as she has worn glasses from 18 months old (now 7 1/2)

Seona1973 Thu 21-Jul-11 21:06:58

according to the nhs website adults and children are advised to have a sight test every 2 years.

www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/1093.aspx?CategoryID=68&SubCategoryID=157

Cocoflower Thu 21-Jul-11 21:12:37

Ah, so it is 2 years.

I already took her to the optician aged 4, last year. She had no school eye sight tests I was aware of though. Infact now I think about it, no medical...

olivo Thu 21-Jul-11 21:18:11

Our opticinas - specsavers, wont see children till hteyare 6. DD1 had an eye test in reception this year - I was amazed that 3 out of 20 in her class are now wearing glasses as a result! wonder why opticians wont test earlier?

Cocoflower Thu 21-Jul-11 21:20:27

6? Really?

I know its hard to test children but if the local one could manage a 4 year old...

Plus they should be investiagting behind the eye for disease etc shouldnt they?

Hulababy Thu 21-Jul-11 21:20:30

DD is 9y and her last test was perfect. Been told to go back every two years. Initially it was annually.

Hulababy Thu 21-Jul-11 21:21:44

olivio - some Specsavers definitely see children under 6y. DD would have been 5y (maybe 4y) at her firets appointment. If they don't know their alphabet letters there is another test they can use.

bumpybecky Thu 21-Jul-11 21:21:53

dd1&2 are tested every 6 months (they both wear glasses) but dd3 (who doesn't) is tested every 12 months

all 3 dds were tested much younger than 6 by the local opticians (although ds who is 3 hasn't been done yet). The optician recommended that we started getting them tested quite young as I've worn glasses since I was 7, so they were fairly likely to need glasses. The first tests were before the started school, they have cards with pictures on for children who don't know their letters.

superjobee Thu 21-Jul-11 21:26:56

DD got her eyes done the other month after my nephew got specs <my sis and BIL dont need them but i do> so thought i'd get her tested. she has perfect vision and i was told to take her in again in 2 years smile

olivo Thu 21-Jul-11 21:30:56

interesting. Iwould like her tested now - she is only 5 next month , a young recpetion! I was picked up when i was 5, although i didnt get glasses till 7 IIRC. I may ask again, or try another optician. she is cool with her alphabet.
thansk -sorry to hijck!

Bunbaker Fri 22-Jul-11 07:21:32

Round here they routinely test children's eyesight at three and a half - or they did when DD was that age. We got a letter asking us to go to the local health centre where a paediatric eye specialist did the test. It is a jolly good job too because they picked up DD's astigmatism, and I had no inkling of it.

It is easy to test the eyes of a small child. They give them shapes to identify instead of letters. DD was referred to the local hospital where they dilated her pupils and looked at the back of her eye. They use this method to work out the prescription as well. We were under the optometrist at the hospital for about two or three years before we were told that we could use an optician.

As DD wears glasses she has her eyes tested every year.

All children should have their eyes tested before they go to school. A surprising number of children don't do well at school to start with simply because they can't see properly.

DBennett Fri 22-Jul-11 17:01:14

A good time for the first routine eye examination is 9 months old.

At this age you are able to assess the early stages of binocular visual development as well as screening for the need for glasses and ocular health abnormalities.
They also can't stop you getting the tests done!

In between the ages of 9 months and three years and a half years you can gain a lot of resistance testing without really any gain in clinical information.

So the next "good time for a first routine test" is 3and a half yrs old.

After this 1-2 years depending on clinical findings, family history and care-giver concerns.

Of course, a good first time if you think your child has problems is as soon as you can arrange it.

P.S. It was mentioned on a post earlier that a local branch of SpecSavers wouldn't see kids till they were 6.
SpecSavers are a franchise so individual stores will have different policies.

But it is generally thought that community opticians often don't have the confidence or equipment to assess children well and it is an area they often feel under trained in.

Sidge Fri 22-Jul-11 17:20:27

The eye test that they have in Reception is in no way comparable to the eye test a qualified optician will do. It's purely a quick simple way of identifying those children that need further investigation by an optician.

We have taken ours every summer since the summer before they started school, ie when they were 4, to a local independent optician. I am extremely short sighted, so want to keep tabs on them in case they inherit it.

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