Survey says! Parents talk about back-to-school eyecare
VSP (Vision Service Plan) Vision Care released the results of a survey (see full article here) sent to 1,000 US parents on the topic of children’s eye exams this month with interesting results:
- 80% of parents say “back to school eye exams are important for my kids” … yet only 50% of parents actually do it
- One third of parents think that annual eye exams are unnecessary
- Half of parents don’t know that 1 out of 4 kids have some kind of vision problem
- 83% of parents take their kids to the dentist every year, but only 56% of parents take their kids to the optometrist every year
When as much as 80% of a child’s learning is visual- we would love to see these survey numbers grow to show a more proactive approach to children’s vision and eye health in Whatcom County.
I told our friend Lucy’s mom Carly about these survey results and she was kind enough to share her story about Lucy’s experience with getting her first pair of glasses at five years old:
Lucy’s First Glasses
“I knew something was up. She was always saying that she could see just fine, but it was in the little things, like inching closer to the tv and complaining about bright lights. The thing was, it didn’t stop my feisty five-year-old from turning cartwheels, hitting baseballs or even reading. And even when I brought up my concern at her yearly checkup, it wasn’t clear if Lucy’s vision was impaired or if it was just her age. And so I put it off.
But after getting a recommendation from Lucy’s kindergarten class, I finally made an appointment to see an optometrist. My suspicions were right and actually much worse than I would’ve guess. She’s near-sighted, far-sighted and her vision was warped from astigmatism. As I understood it, if she were an adult, this would make her legally blind. BUT since we caught this early enough, we are working towards improving and reversing this.
The fun part was picking out new frames. We headed over to see Caitlin at Binyon Vision. She and the staff were incredibly helpful and patient. Likewise, they helped us find and fit the perfect pair for Lucy. She loves her red frames!
I remember when she first put them on how she started pointing to her brothers moles on his face that she had never seen before. She was silent (a rarity) the whole way home while looking out the car window. It’s opened up a new world of clarity and detail.
Her steadily improving vision is the best part about getting started with glasses now. Over these past nine months, her prescriptions have incrementally corrected her eyesight. They have helped her eyes develop and become stronger on their own.
80% of learning is visual for kids, and 50% of parents choose to skip annual eye exams. I hope Lucy’s story encourages other parents to have their kids’ eyesight tested early and regularly.”
photographer: Carly Navarette (lifestyle photographer in the Pacific Northwest – learn more here