Why You Should Add an Eye Exam to the Back to School Checklist

boy with glasses

Getting ready to go back to school is a very busy time, with lots of different things to prepare and think about. One of the things that is often overlooked by stressed parents with hectic schedules is whether their child’s vision is clear and their eyes are working as well as they could. Unfortunately, this could have serious consequences for your child and their learning. Here is why you should add a pediatric eye exam to the back to school checklist.

Poor vision and visual skills could affect your child’s ability to learn

Studies have found that as much as 80% of the learning presented in schools is done so in a visual format. Whiteboards, screens, books, and demonstrations are all used to share the information to teach our children everything that they need to know to complete their education. Unfortunately, if your child cannot see clearly or doesn’t have the necessary visual skills, they may not be able to fully access their learning, and this could lead to them falling behind their peers and not achieving their academic potential.

Some children with vision problems are misdiagnosed with other conditions

There are many different conditions that can affect children. Identifying exactly what these are can be difficult because a child may not have the ability to express exactly what they are experiencing. Another problem is that some children may not even realize that their vision is impaired or that their eyes aren’t working as they should. To them, what they see is ‘normal’. This means that it is possible for children to believe that they aren’t ‘smart enough’ to do well at school, when in fact there are other factors influencing their ability to learn and produce work. In these instances, it is common for children to exhibit undesirable behaviors to distract those around them, drawing attention away from their difficulties. A small percentage of children are misdiagnosed with conditions such as attention deficit disorder (ADD) and oppositional defiance disorder (ODD) when it is really their vision that requires attention.

You can prevent your child from experiencing unpleasant symptoms

Vision problems and poor visual skills can cause all manner of different effects, some of which can be unpleasant and affect your child’s quality of life. These include:

  • Headaches

  • Burning eyes

  • Double vision

  • Squinting

  • Eye-rubbing

  • Excessive tearing

  • Skipping lines while reading

  • Losing their place while reading

  • Struggling to anticipate speeds/movement

  • Issues with moving around due to impaired vision and visual skills

Regular eye exams will ensure that your child’s vision and visual skills are the best that they can be, helping them to avoid these symptoms.

Poor vision can knock your child’s confidence

Childhood can be a very stressful time for young people who want to fit in and make friends with their peers. Unfortunately, there are many different things that can knock a child’s confidence, including problems with their vision. Children who can’t see clearly or who don’t have the same degree of visual skills as those around them can find that they feel as though as they are different to others. For example, a child may not have the reaction times to see a ball coming towards them during sports, leading to them not performing as well as they could. This can affect their confidence and their ability to interact with their peers, particularly if the other children pick up on what they perceive to be a ‘weakness’. Every parent wants their child to be as confident as possible in all areas of their life, and clear vision can empower them with this self-assurance both at school and away.


For more information about why you should add an eye exam to your back to school checklist, please don’t hesitate to speak to our knowledgeable eye care team. Call us at (904) 905-0700 to schedule an appointment.