Child Eye Health and Safety Month - August

Did you know that it is estimated that 80% of classroom education is taught visually?  

Since August has arrived and a new school year is about to begin, Friends for Sight wants you to make sure to include an eye examination as part of your back to school check list. As part of Child Eye Health and Safety Month, in addition to immunizations and school orientations, it is highly recommended your child receive an eye examination before going back to school.  The inability to see clearly affects not only academic performance but also althletics and self-esteem.  Start the new school year out right by making sure that your student is seeing clearly!

Common signs of vision troubles in children include: frequently rubbing eyes, squinting, tilting or turning head to look at objects, wandering eyes, or squeezing eyes. If you're child displays any of these symptoms, please schedule an appointment to have their eyes checked. Amblyopia (lazy eye), Strabismus (crossed eyes), color deficiency (color blindness), and refractive errors (nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism) are the most common conditions that can affect a child's vision. Many of these conditions, if diagnosed early, can be treated and vision can be restored. If the condition is not diagnosed until later in life, treatment will not be as effective.

Eye safety is just as important as eye health. Every year thousands of children sustain an eye injury - 90 percent of which can be prevented if suitable protective eyewear is used. From sports and recreation, to toys and fireworks, an eye injury can happen at any time. By taking proper precautions (providing age-appropriate toys or proper protective eyewear), you can protect your child from injury. Always purchase toys that meet the safety standards of American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and provide protective eyewear, as corrective lenses do not protect the eye; most protective eyewear is made from a lightweight polycarbonate and is activity-specific. If your child should experience an eye injury, DO NOT allow child to rub or touch the eye, DO NOT apply medication to the eye, and DO NOT attempt to remove any debris from the eye. If the eye injury is caused by a chemical in the eye, flush the eye with water. For all eye injuries seek medical attention immediately.

We all want our children to be happy and healthy, and we want to protect them from harm. We can best achieve this goal by getting our children yearly wellness check-ups and eye examinations before school, as well as by providing safe toys, environments, and always have adult supervision.

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