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Tag Archive | "eye exam"

The Test every kid needs before going back to school



Remember, vision and learning are directly connected, as approximately 80 percent of what a child learns is presented visually. For success in the classroom, the sports field and more, start the school year right with a comprehensive eye exam. PHOTO SOURCE: (c) Valerii Honcharuk / stock.Adobe.com

(StatePoint) Before schedules get too hectic, experts say that parents should prioritize a visit to the eye doctor this back-to-school season.

 “An annual comprehensive eye exam is essential for optimal wellness, as well as ensuring your child reaches his or her full academic potential,” says Dr. Jennifer Wademan, VSP network eye doctor.

The incidence of visual impairment in preschool children is expected to increase 26 percent over the next 45 years, affecting almost 220,000 children, according to a recent study by the USC Gayle and Edward Roski Eye Institute. What’s more, kids have more demand on their eyes and vision than ever before due to the increased use of digital devices.

To help ensure a smooth transition back-to-school, consider the following tips and insights:

Get a Comprehensive Eye Exam

While 76 percent of parents said sight is the most important sense, only 50 percent take their kids for an annual eye exam, according to a recent survey conducted by YouGov and VSP Vision Care, with many parents under the incorrect impression that the vision screening conducted by the school nurse or at the pediatrician’s office is sufficient. Although many schools offer abbreviated vision screenings throughout the year, they can miss up to 80 percent of vision problems, including serious conditions like amblyopia (lazy eye), which can lead to vision loss if not treated. An annual comprehensive eye exam is the best way to detect vision problems, as well as other conditions related to the eyes that can affect overall health and wellness.

 “How a child’s brain processes visual information is complex, and a screening alone isn’t a substitute for a comprehensive exam, nor is it the most reliable way to track a child’s eye health,” says Dr. Wademan. “A comprehensive eye exam with an eye doctor however, evaluates multiple aspects of vision, including the close-up skills essential for reading, tracking and focusing.”

Don’t Wait for Complaints 

Among those parents who do not bring their children to the eye doctor annually, 72 percent of moms and 48 percent of dads said they would be motivated to do so if their child complains of discomfort or changes in vision. Don’t wait for that first complaint! Certain changes to eyesight can happen gradually, and children may not realize that their vision is impaired.

Dr. Wademan points out that catching problems early is important:

 “When a child’s visual system is not given a clear and focused image, and if his or her eyes are not working together, the child could fail to ever achieve normal visual acuity,” she says. “These patients end up struggling to see well in adulthood, even with contacts or glasses.”

To find an eye doctor near you, visit VSP.com.

Posted in Back 2 School, FeaturedComments Off on The Test every kid needs before going back to school

Five resolutions to keep your eyes healthy in 2017


PHOTO SOURCE: (c) UBER IMAGES - Fotolia.com

PHOTO SOURCE: (c) UBER IMAGES – Fotolia.com

(StatePoint) The new year is the perfect opportunity for reflection, renewal and the chance to start fresh. Consider making lifestyle changes that can improve your vision and health throughout the year.

Here are five ways that you can help keep your eyes and body healthy in 2017.

1. Get an eye exam. An annual trip to the eye doctor is critical for the entire family to ensure healthy and sharp vision. But did you know your visit to the optometrist is important to your overall health too? A routine eye exam can potentially detect signs of chronic diseases like diabetes, high cholesterol, and more. Because many symptoms of health conditions often don’t appear until damage has occurred, eye exams are a powerful, preventative health tool to keep tabs on what’s happening in your body.

An eye exam is a small investment for your eyes and body that’s well worth it, and a vision plan can help you keep the cost down. To search for a vision plan, visit vspdirect.com.

2. Eat an eye-healthy diet. You probably know carrots are good for your eyes, but so are dark leafy greens such as spinach, kale and collard greens. Eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables for a hefty punch of key vitamins, and a vision protecting-substance called lutein.

3. Quit smoking (or never start). Smoking cigarettes has many well-known associated health risks, such as cardiovascular problems and cancer. Did you also know that smoking can contribute to the cause of many vision problems? Research links smoking to an increased risk of developing age-related macular degeneration, cataracts and optic nerve damage, all of which can lead to blindness.

4. Maintain a healthy weight. Weight is a contributing factor for your overall health as well as your eyes. Conditions such as obesity and diabetes can lead to vision problems, like cataracts. By eating healthy portions and exercising regularly, you can reduce your risk.

5. Protect eyes from blue light. Much of our days are spent with our faces glued to devices like smartphones, computers and televisions. Those digital screens emit high-energy blue light, which causes digital eye strain that leads to headaches, blurred vision, dry eyes, and even neck pain.

Ask your eye doctor about the best options to help you reduce eye strain, including using lenses with coatings that reflect and absorb blue light. You can also follow the 20-20-20 rule: every 20 minutes, spend 20 seconds looking at something at least 20 feet away.

With a balanced approach to preventative care, you can help keep your eyes and body healthy throughout 2017 and beyond.

Posted in NewsComments Off on Five resolutions to keep your eyes healthy in 2017


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