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Set Your Child Up For Success This Year

Screen Shot 2014-07-15 at 1.52.29 PMCastle Pines Eye Care is proud to support families with pediatric optometry services and we fully believe in the importance of vision care for children. School is just around the corner and it is a great time of year to think about getting your child prepared for success this year! Our doctors are experts at pediatric eye issues and can help you make smart decisions about your child’s health. Today we’d like to explore some common pediatric eye health situations that our doctors encounter regularly in our office.

Amblyopia, or “lazy eye”, is a condition where there is a problem in the way the brain interprets visual images from one or both eyes.  Vital connections between a child’s eyes and brain are formed early in life.  When something blocks or blurs vision in one or both eyes, the brain can then start to ignore or suppress what it’s seeing and the eye becomes weaker.  Children can have difficulty reading a blackboard from a distance, or catching a ball.  Not all children with amblyopia may have crossed or wandering eyes, in fact many look properly aligned.

Vision therapy is a non-surgical approach to improving vision problems. Our optometrists are experts at understanding when vision therapy is a viable option for your child. The general goal of vision therapy is to treat vision problems that cannot be successfully corrected with glasses, contacts, or surgery alone. Unlike eyeglasses and contact lenses, or eye surgery, vision therapy aims to “teach” the visual system to correct itself. Similar to physical therapy, vision therapy helps the eyes and brain work together to control vision more effectively. Vision therapy can include the use of lenses, prisms, filters, computerized visual activities and viewing instruments.

Cataracts can be a major issue for children if left untreated and many people don’t realize that children can get cataracts. About 50 percent of cases are inherited from one parent who might have no symptoms or who might have had surgery for a similar problem as an adolescent. Trauma can also be a cause of cataracts. Both blunt and penetrating injuries to the eyes can disrupt the integrity of the lens and lead to its clouding.

Infections are a common issue in pediatric ocular health. As children are developing and growing their immune system, they can encounter a number of bacteria and germs that cause conjunctivitis and other eye infections. If you notice any signs of infection, do not hesitate to speak with our office staff. We regularly treat eye infections in children and understand how important their health is at a young age.

Perhaps the most common situation we see in our office at Castle Pines Eye Care is simply vision correction needed in children. Sadly, many children do not get the regular eye exams that can detect a need for vision correction. An optometrist can do a thorough examination and refraction to determine the exact prescription needed for your child’s eyes. While vision tests at school can be a great clue into your child’s vision health, they don’t tell the full story of what your child needs to see 20/20. At our office, we customize the prescription for your child – AND we make it fun to pick out the glasses that that prescription can go into!

Castle Pines Eye Care we take a custom approach to each patient’s eye health and seek to find the best option for overall health. If you are interested in learning more about vision therapy, please contact our office.