Your Answers: Eye Health in Children from VSP VisionCare

Last month, I posted an informational post and giveaway by VSP VisionCare.

In that post, I encouraged you to ask questions about eye health concerns. You asked and I’ve got some answers from the professionals at VSP VisionCare.

Disclaimer: These answers come directly from VSP VisionCare. Multi-Testing Mommy is not taking responsibility for this information.

How is an eye exam done on a 6 month old child and what types of problems may arise at this age?
Eye exams for children aren’t quite the same as they are for adults. Take a look at this video to see some of the ways they are different. Doctors are looking for specific visual cues and behaviors during an exam because a baby can’t provide verbal feedback.

Does eating carrots really help your eyes?
Of course! Have you ever seen a rabbit wearing glasses? Carrots and other veggies have nutrients that help your eyes stay healthy.

How do you test a baby’s eyesight?
Teller cards are often used to test a baby’s eyesight. They are cards that have different patterns of stripes on them that correspond to different levels of eyesight. The doctor watches where the baby is looking and can determine if the baby sees the stripes.

What causes bleeding behind the eyes and if laser treatment stops the bleeding, can it recur?
Bleeding behind the eyes is common in people that have a vascular condition that weakens the blood vessels or in which new weak leaky blood vessels grow. The two most common conditions are diabetes and high blood pressure. Lasers can be used as a treatment but there is always a chance that it will occur again, especially if the systemic condition is not being ideally managed.

If a 6 month old baby gets an eye exam and it comes back they have bad eye sight, do you have eye glasses for babies or do you wait for when they are older?
Most of the time, if the baby’s eyes are healthy and there are no negative implications from monitoring, a doctor will often wait a few months and re-examine them.

My 11 year old just got glasses. The optometrist said it’s common for children to start needing them after a big growth spurt (which she just had). Is her prescription likely to stay pretty much the same or continue to worsen?
It’s rare for the Rx to stay the same. Most of the time there are small fluctuations in the power year to year, which is why an annual exam is important.

My question is how often should adults have an eye exam? (if they are not currently eye glass wearers?) At what age do people start needing reading glasses?
You should get an eye exam every year…even if you don’t need glasses. Eye doctors can detect certain chronic diseases (e.g., hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol) up to 7 years before any other health care provider would see symptoms. And, of course, they check for problems with the eyes themselves—problems you cannot see without dilating or imaging the eye. As for reading glasses, it really is a case-by-case basis.

Can eye strain cause permanent vision problems?
No, strain is temporary discomfort that is remedied when the source is removed or alleviated with a solution. Your eye doctor will be able to help identify the issue and provide solutions.

I turned 40 and had to get reading glasses. Now, one year later I find that while the reading glasses are good my eyesight seems to be getting progressively worse. When should I see the optometrist again to get new glasses?
At your annual eye exam, your eye doctor will update your prescription so you can continue to see things as clear and as comfortable as possible.

Thank you, VSP, for answering all of my readers’ questions! And for providing me with a pair of designer sunglasses! Oh! I ♥LOVE♥ my new sunglasses!


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