Eye Tests Before Grade I
The transfer from kindergarten to Grade I is an exciting time for both child and parents. Alongside the preparations, it is recommended that every child undergo a comprehensive eye examination prior to the beginning of the academic year. The team in the Ophthalmology Unit at Schneider Children’s headed by Prof. Moshe Snir notes that healthy eyes and proper vision play a significant role in the child’s ability to read and study.
Various problems with vision can cause the child headaches and double vision that can lead to errors in copying from the board and interfere with the child’s success and assimilation within the educational framework.
Even if a child does not complain about any difficulty with his sight and his parents are unaware of anything wrong, diagnosis of any problem at this stage can prevent problems in Grade I and the development of vision. Eye tests are even more important if there is family history of eye disorders in childhood, such as lazy eye, squinting, or wearing glasses at an early age. Eye examinations are not painful or uncomfortable for the child.
A vision test involves checking focus of long-sighted vision and where possible, also short-sighted vision. Sharpness of vision is conducted with numbers, letters, drawings and shapes according to the child’s willingness and ability. Eye movement is also checked as well as an assessment of squinting in both long- and short-sighted vision. In addition, depth of vision (3-D) is assessed. The test also includes a physical check of the eye orbit.
A crucial part of an eye and vision test is performed after drops have been inserted to enlarge the pupils. Drops may cause the child slight discomfort during insertion. When the pupils have dilated, it is possible to check the eye’s structure at the rear and the eye’s optics (short vision, long vision, cylindrical shape, differences between eye numbers and so on).