Annual eye exam adds to success in the classroom - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Annual eye exam adds to success in the classroom

Annual eye exam adds to success in the classroom

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

School is back in session for many kids in the Heartland, but it's not too late to get your kid's eyes checked.
 
Vision plays a huge role in a child's success in classroom.
 
Kim Lynch says a comprehensive eye exam saved her child's vision.
 
Her son Noah has been seeing an ophthalmologist since the age of three.
 
Noah has a condition call amblyopia.

It is a condition where vision in one eye is reduced because the eye and the brain are not working together properly. 
 
Lynch says the treatment success rate drops drastically around age 8 or 9. 
 
“If we haven't had it examined and caught it early,” Lynch says. “He ultimately may not have really hardly any vision at all in one of his eyes.”
 
A recent study by the Center of Disease Control and Prevention found that 35 percent of kids have never seen an eye care specialist. 
 
Dr. Laura Evans says many parents may have the misconception that the school screening is sufficient.
 
“I'm an advocate for them,” Dr. Evans says. “They do catch some things.  But they really only pick up on one or two components of a comprehensive eye exam.”
 
Dr. Evans says 80 percent of the learning we do as a child is visual and an annual eye exam can help catch problems early.
 
“We're checking the health of the eyes,” Dr. Evans says. “So we see a gamut of it and any of them could cause learning problems.”
 
Problems can range from headaches while reading to not being able to read up to the appropriate grade level.

The American Optometric Association recommends a comprehensive eye exam as early as 6 to 12 months old, then at age 3 and before kindergarten.
 
“After they've started school, we'll recommend once a year,” Dr. Evans says. “Right before school starts there seems to be an influx of teachers and children.”

Dr. Evans urges parent to add a comprehensive eye exam as part of their child’s annual medical check-up routine.

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