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Frequently Asked Questions about Pediatric Eye Exam Answered by Our Ashburn, VA Optometrist

Pediatric eye exams are important for the children of the surrounding areas of Ashburn, Broadlands, Waxpool, Sterling, Brambleton, and Lansdowne. At OptimEYES, our eye doctor encourages parents to take their children to the eye doctor starting from an early age. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions parents have about pediatric eye exams.

boy reading a book in Ashburn, VA

Are pediatric eye exams necessary if your child doesn't display any vision problems or symptoms?

Yes. Not all eye diseases will display obvious symptoms until vision is lost, so catching eye diseases early can help preserve your child's vision and prevent the advancement of diseases. In addition, some eye diseases (like eye cancer) can be deadly, and should be treated right away. Finally, many children who suffer from refractive error do not realize that they have a problem, and thus will not tell their parents that they need to see an eye doctor. The only way to ensure that your child is getting the treatment he or she needs is to take your child to the eye doctor on a regular basis, regardless of symptoms.

When should you bring your child to the eye doctor?

Children should see the eye doctor once annually starting from about the age of 6 months old. In addition, you should bring your child in to the eye doctor if he or she displays symptoms of conditions like pink eye or refractive error.

What is pink eye, and how can you tell if your child has it?

Pink eye is a common eye infection that affects many children. Symptoms of pink eye include:

  • Redness in and around the eye
  • Discharge from the eye
  • Itchiness
  • Blurred vision
  • Frequent tears
  • Sensitivity to light

This condition is very contagious, so if your child displays any of the symptoms above, he or she should come in for an eye exam immediately.

What are the symptoms that a child needs glasses?

Children who need glasses may:

  • Get headaches when doing school work
  • Sit too close to the television
  • Squint
  • Lose their place while reading
  • Hold books too close to their face

Some children who suffer from refractive error will also have behavior problems that can easily be misdiagnosed as ADD or ADHD.

How old does a child have to be to get glasses?

Children can get eye glasses as young as infancy. Eye doctors can use special eye drops during the eye exam to diagnose refractive error and write an accurate prescription.

Do pediatric eye exams hurt?

No, eye exams do not hurt. Some children may find parts of the eye exam uncomfortable because of the eye drops, which make the eyes more sensitive to light. This effect wears off and your child's eyes should feel normal by the following day.

What happens during a pediatric eye exam?

During a pediatric eye exam, optometrists may or may not dilate your child's eyes. During the exam, he or she will check for the following:

  • Proper eye function. The eye doctor will ensure that your child can see color, perceive depth, track moving objects and so on.
  • Good eye health. The eye doctor will look for signs of eye diseases like glaucoma, cataracts, eye cancer and more.
  • Clear vision. Your child's optometry specialist will check your child's eyes for signs of near sightedness, far sightedness and so on.

If your child's eye doctor finds evidence of eye disease or refractive error, the eye doctor will write a prescription or recommend treatment for your child.

Where can parents take their kids for an eye exam in the surrounding areas of Ashburn, Broadlands, Waxpool, Sterling, Brambleton, and Lansdowne, VA?

Kids in the surrounding communities of Ashburn, Broadlands, Waxpool, Sterling, Brambleton, and Lansdowne can go to OptimEYES for total eye care and pediatric eye exams. To make an appointment with our optometrist, Dr. Seema Mohanan, contact us today at (703) 687-4719.