Eye Exams: Preparing Your Child

3 December 2018
 Categories: , Blog

While most adults know that an eye exam is nothing to fret over, children see only a large chair in a dark room and head for the door. In order to avoid the horrific experience of you trying to wrestle a screaming child in the doctor's chair, here are a few things you can do to prepare your child for their annual eye exam.

1. Find a Family Friendly Eye Doctor. Let's face it; not all doctors are created equal. While some may be excellent doctors, they may not know how to talk or interact with children. Instead of discovering that your doctor has no skill with kids during your first visit, make sure that your search is focused on family-friendly doctors. Eye doctors know that by stating that they are family friendly, they are basically putting up a big sign that says "Bring your kids here."

2. Explain the Procedure. Children are often a lot less afraid of things that they understand. Tell them the story of your last eye exam. Let them know all of the details and how they made you feel. For example, explain the process of reading lines on the screen. Tell your child that they will sit in a big chair and then the doctor will point to different lines on the wall and ask them what they can see. Explain to them that we all see things differently, and the doctor is trying to understand how the child see things. While the eye doctor's office can seem intimidating at first, a little explanation can go a long way towards comforting a child. 

3. Bring a Comfort Item. Sometimes kids just need to feel like they need to be brave for someone else. Invite the child to bring a favorite stuffed animal or comfort item, and help them to comfort their stuffed animal. Have the child explain the procedure to their little friend. Let the child pretend to be the doctor at home, performing eye tests and fitting the stuffed animal for glasses. Giving them a little control in the situation may help them to be brave.

4. Give Them Options. If it is discovered that the child does need glasses, give the kid options. Getting children to wear glasses is a difficult behavior to teach, but it can be helped if the child enjoys their choice. If they choose something that they are proud of wearing, you will have to pry the glasses from them at night. 

To set up an eye exam for your child, contact an eye clinic like Quality Eye Care.