Our strong commitment to children’s vision stems from the fact that 80% of classroom learning is through our visual system.
At Harrel Eyecare Center we strive to make sure your child feels comfortable, and has some fun during their exam. If necessary, our optical team is ready to help you select a frame from our children’s eyewear selection, and ensure that they fit properly.
What is Special About Children’s Vision?
Vision in the broadest sense, is the global ability of the brain to extract, and act on information presented to the eye. This complex process can be thought of as three major but related areas:
- Visual acuity which is largely dependent upon refractive status and eye health.
- Visual efficiency skills, representing eye focusing, teaming, and tracking skills
- Visual information processing is the ability to recognize and discriminate visual stimuli and to interpret them correctly based upon previous experience
Every examination, we provide for children, regardless of the child’s age, has these thoughts in mind.
About Eye Exams & Developmental Vision Exams
A comprehensive eye examination will assess visual acuity, refractive status, ocular health, eye tracking, eye focusing, and eye teaming. Visual acuity measures how clearly a child sees objects. Refractive status measures for nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. The child is evaluated for any eye health problems, including active pathology or congenital anomalies.
A second level of assessment is our vision therapy evaluation (or developmental visual evaluation), that is a more in-depth analysis of how your child uses their eyes during activities such as reading. Eye tracking is the ability of the eyes to fixate, smoothly follow and look between objects or printed words. Eye focusing is the ability to efficiently chance and sustain focus while reading. Eye teaming is the ability to coordinate both eyes accurately and without fatigue or excessive effort. Accurate eye teaming is also important for accurate two-eyed depth perception. Visual processing refers to how the brain uses and understands information through visual learning. These areas are assessed during our developmental vision evaluation to determine if vision therapy will be helpful for your child.
Our infant vision examinations start in early infancy and continue through the school years. Although young children cannot use the “eye chart”, with equipment we can assess differences between the eyes and eye health.
Many vision problems can be corrected more easily with early diagnosis and treatment. Reports have estimated that up to 25% of students in grades K-6 have vision-related problems, which may contribute to poor school performance. The visual system matures rapidly during the first few years and it is important to identify any problems that may interfere with normal vision development.
Vision and Learning: “Is it Really ADD?” Seminar
- How vision problems can affect school or work even if one has 20/20 eyesight
- Vision Problems that can be mislabeled as ADD
- What to watch for in the classroom
Dr. Harrel presents to parent organizations as well as in-services for educators. Please call for availability and details.
This seminar is open to parents, educators, healthcare professionals, and other interested parties. Dr. Harrel speaks about vision’s intimate relationship to learning, and the way in which a vision problem can cause symptoms simoar to those in ADD/ADHD.
Call 918-745-9662 for availability and more information on upcoming seminars.
Recent research show that a vision problem, convergence insufficiently, is three time more common in children diagnosed with ADD/ADHD. Dr. Granet, a nationally known pediatric ophthalmologist presented the findings. Convergence insufficiency “makes it more difficult to concentrate on reading, which is also one of the ways doctors diagnose ADHD”, Granet commented. There are likely cases that have been misdiagnosed as ADHD prior to having a proper visual evaluation. This research echoes the research that has been ongoing for years in the specialty of developmental optometry.