United States – The smell in the air is not pumpkin just yet…. It’s the smell of school bus exhaust and long lines of traffic back to school for this month. August is designated Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month. Along with school supply shopping and purchasing back-to-school clothing items, it is time to add eye exam appointments to the to-do list.
A good rule of thumb is that if a child has never had an eye exam, they should have one right away. The American Optometric Association suggests that infants should have an eye exam between ages six months and one year. If an eye doctor did not detect an issue, the child should have one again around age three, and once again before starting Kindergarten. The eye doctor can help detect nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism. There are some specific warning signs that may indicate vision problems in children. Some of these include:
• Wandering or crossed eyes
• Disinterest in reading or viewing distant objects
• Squinting or turning the head in an unusual manner while watching television
If your eye doctor suggests a vision problem, it is highly suggested that you follow their prescriptions for treatment, whether it be simply glasses or vision therapy. There are myths and truths when it comes to vision so if you have questions or concerns and don’t want to wait for your appointment you should join The Dry Eye Show Facebook page and tune in live on Sunday evenings with Drs. Travis and Jenna Zigler. The Eye Love optometrist duo answer any kind of eye related issues. They make eye care fun and interactive while explaining the confusing health care jaron.
Many make excuses, but a busy academic life is definitely no excuse to take shortcuts with eye health. It is never too early or too late, to start an eye care routine with your children. Eye problems can appear in anyone. Not just children, but college students and other young adults should be cautious of a few things that relate back to eye health and vision safety. Here are a few tips…
• Be aware around screens. Eye strain is a real thing. Staring at any device for too long can make your eyes feel dry and tired, which can cause blurred vision.
• Practice good hygiene. Keep your contact lenses clean. Drs. Travis and Jenna Zigler, Eye Love Founders, have a line of Heydrate products where healthy habits make eyes healthy. Eye Love’s hypochlorous acid Lid & Lash Cleanser is one that is definitely worth checking out for eye hygiene for all ages, and it’s safe even for infants.
• Don’t share makeup. Seems harmless, but this can spread viral infections like pink eye and cause styes. Stick to your own makeup and mascara.
• Wear the right eyewear for activities. Protect your eyes from sports related injuries. The AAO says about 30,000 people in the United States go to emergency departments each year because of sports-related eye injuries. Protective eyewear is a must!
• Keep your body healthy to keep your eyes healthy. Getting enough sleep, not smoking, and eating right and exercising is important for everyone. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle really affects your overall health including your eyes.
• Immediate choices have lifelong effects. The decision made today can influence the risk of developing eye diseases later in life. For example, wear sunglasses with UV protection. That simple of a decision can help decrease chances for cataracts, MGD, and some eye cancers.
• Get scheduled check ups. In some cases, eye exams also can be life-saving. Some health conditions can be visible in the eyes. Illnesses like diabetes, potential strokes, autoimmune disease and even some cancers can be found during an eye exam.
Help make sure everyone has a successful school year and start by scheduling a comprehensive eye exam for everyone in your household. Then, take the tips for vision safety and see which ones you can implement into your daily routines.
To learn more about Eye Love and read more eye health related blogs, checkout https://www.eyelovethesun.com.