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Anyone taken their 4yr old to the opticians? How do they test their eyes?

(13 Posts)
muppetgirl Wed 09-Jul-08 20:03:45

Ds 1 is rubbing his eyes when we he does anything close up. Not complained of not being able to see but pokes and rubs his eyes. Doesn't so this any other time. My brother wore glasses from 3 and I had trouble with my eyes not working together properly from school age -close up work highlighted the problem. Have made an app for ds 1 on fri -how will they test his eye sight as he doesn't know all of the alphabet? I know I'm being thick but I would think it possible surely?

EffiePerine Wed 09-Jul-08 20:04:51

Can you go to your GP? I think at that age they see someone at the hospital rather than a standard opticians.

EffiePerine Wed 09-Jul-08 20:06:44

from NHS site:

All babies will have their eyes checked at about 6 weeks of age by the GP or health visitor. The school nurse or orthoptist (a specialist in vision and eye abnormalities) will then normally test them again at the school entry check at 4-5 years.
Young children with suspected problems will be referred to the orthoptist who works in local health clinics or to the hospital eye clinic, where you may see the orthoptist or ophthalmologist (eye doctor).

I;d check with your GP or HV

frogs Wed 09-Jul-08 20:07:25

They have pictures of objects in different sizes (apple, house, train, blahdiblah). At least that's what eye hospitals have. Be warned -- they may also put drops in his eyes to dilate the pupils so that they can have a good look in the back of the eye. The drops sting a bit, so you might want to have some smarties handy. He won't be able to focus for a while afterwards, and will be more light-sensitive than usual.

If you have any doubts about the eye test, get your GP to refer you to a paediatric ophthalmologist.

saadia Wed 09-Jul-08 20:10:27

they show them pictures if they don't know the alphabet there are also some drops they put in the eyes which make it easier for them to look inside the eye and get exact measurements in case of short or long sightedness don't worry they are usually experienced sorry can't do punctuation

Seona1973 Wed 09-Jul-08 20:12:34

my hv referred my dd to the orthoptist at the hospital at about 18 months after I noticed she had a squint. They did the pictures too i.e. they showed a picture (house, duck, car, shoe, apple, etc) and then showed them getting progressivly smaller and dd had to identify what they were. She has only started doing letters the last couple of times (at 4.6years) but she holds a laminated card with letters on and points to which letter she thinks it is that the orthoptist is holding. She has had the drops a couple of times too but that is normally once a year to check her prescription is still correct.

muppetgirl Wed 09-Jul-08 20:17:52

Thanks for all this, the woman I rang first said they couldn't so anything till they knew their alphabet. When I asked how they would test someone with special needs she said she didn't know so I phone somewhere else. He was seen by the paediatric optician when he was little as he had a suspected squint. This later turned out to be an immaturity of his nose and when it developed a little the squint went. I'm just concerned as I had a little trouble when I started school, headaches, watery eyes, rubbing eyes etc and I wasn't seen for a while so I wanted to be on the ball when ds showed the same signs as me. Will go on Fri. to see what they say but will also go to GP as I know there could be a problem and don’t want to wait till he starts school in Sept. Am I being an overprotective mummy? blush

PestoMonster Wed 09-Jul-08 20:22:27

You're not being overprotective. Find yourself a good opthamlmic opticians. I've been taking my dds since they were babies for annual checks. This is because my father was born with cataracts and I was concerned that the dds could have inherited them too. They hadn't, but children's check-ups are free on the NHS, so we go as a matter of course and my dds love it smile

Good luck!!

Seona1973 Wed 09-Jul-08 20:25:39

no I dont think you are being overprotective. If something is wrong with his eyes then it is best to get it dealt with sooner rather than later. Some opticians seem to be able to deal with children too. A friend who has a couple of kids at dd's nursery took them to one of our local opticians to get their eyes seen as her son in particular was holding books, etc very close to his face so she suspected he wasnt seeing properly. The optician used drops in their eyes and both ended up with glasses. Her lo's are 3 and 4 1/2.

gladbag Wed 09-Jul-08 20:26:20

I've recently had a standard letter through with an appointment for ds to see the paediatric optician for an eye test at my local clinic. He's 4.6 and due to start school in September. Looks as if they do all the rising fives here (Devon), as I didn't ask for an appointment. The optician visits the family clinic for a morning every month. Would probably be worth ringing your health visitor and asking if there is anything like that going on in your area, as it would save seeing an inexperienced (with littlies) optician or treking all the way to the eye hospital. I don't think you are being over protective at all - very sensible infact smile

Nemoandthefishes Wed 09-Jul-08 20:28:55

Ds was 3 when I took him for an eye test and they did variety of things from looking at red and green lights and pointing out animals to some alphabet and number work but thats because I told them ds could do those. They also had to put in relaxing eye drops to see how the back of the eye works. He has had glasses since then and been tested another 2 times in the same way and he is now 4.10yrs

muppetgirl Wed 09-Jul-08 20:29:48

Thanks all (I love mnet!)
I'll speak to the hv as I'm seeing her re ds 2's 8 month check next week so I won't have to wait 6 weeks to see my gp (anyone else have this problem? Ds1 will have started school before he sees our dr for a routine app!!)

Nemoandthefishes Wed 09-Jul-08 20:30:29

oh and to add ds started with rubbing his eyes and blinking a lot!!

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