Why You Should Take Care Of Your Eyes While You're Young

We ignored our parents when they told us, “Don’t sit so close to the screens, you’ll get bad eyesight when you grow up”, or “eat this it’s good for you”, I’m sure it all came from a good place coupled with experience – and we just didn’t want to listen. We find ourselves now being the adults in the room, telling our own kids, nieces, and nephews the very same advice we ignored.

Do we now understand the importance of taking care of our eyes from a small age, because truly it can save a lot of doctor’s trips, surgeries, money, and health issues in the long term? This time we get to understand why it's important to take care of your eyes whilst you are young and incorporate this knowledge into our kids' lives as well. That's how we become better adults.

Eye Examinations:

This is the first thing we go through upon a visit to the optometrist, a test. Regular eye tests from a young age are very important in monitoring the health status and in early detection of any visual issues so that children can prevent long term chronic issues and be able to enjoy a safe childhood and perform at their optimal level in school.

Ever thought about why some kids find it difficult to concentrate in class, in some cases it is because they cannot see the chalkboard clearly enough and thus concentration literally goes out the window and is acting like a fool. Part of the examination focuses on eye movement skills, focusing skills and visual acuity from different distances.

A simple eye examination can detect many possible chronic and other health issues like:

  • Cataracts,
  • Blood diseases,
  • High blood pressure and cholesterol,
  • Diabetes
  • Even brain

Just one examination can tell your doctor a whole lot more, after all the eyes can tell no lies.

So, when is it safe enough to get your child's eyes examined?

It’s not something that you need to do addictively. The first examination can start at 6 months old, then at 3 years old and when they start grade 1. Once your children start proper school, it is safe to start a routine check-up every 2 years (provided there are no issues). If your children have glasses or need to get a pair, then a consultation every year is most beneficial, after all, we are dealing with children so their feedback may not always be the most descriptive or well informed, so the best time to secure that appointment with your podiatrist is when those busybodies are at their most active. 

BONUS TIP: Remember, school eye screenings and screenings at a paediatrician’s office are NOT eye exams. They are only checking visual acuity but could miss health problems, focusing issues, and binocularity issues that are causing health and vision problems.

What about your teenagers?

Whilst teenagers would love to think they know themselves better than their parents do, the truth is, there’s a lot more their eyes can reveal. Here are a few common eye issues found in teenagers:

  • Dry eye syndrome is usually caused by a lot of light exposure from screens
  • UV light damage
  • Shortsightedness/ farsightedness
  • Sports-related injuries, amongst others.

It’s not magic, it's science, healthy eyesight leads to healthy brain function. That matter between our ears is the key organ to our lives and seeing as how our optic nerves connect to them, I’d rather think a happy and healthy symbiotic relationship between the two is vital.

Taking care of your eyes- your windows to the world can help you see your life through a different vision, so invest in them from a young age and if you are already an adult, it’s never a bad idea to start now.

Prevent what you can and save what you must. Speak to your doctor about booking an eye exam today and start taking better care of your children’s future, starting with their eyes.

-     Ari