The importance of eye health: from learning to preventing glaucoma

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The importance of eye health: from learning to preventing glaucoma

Regular visits to the eye doctor are important for both children and adults

You’re supposed to go to the doctor once a year, and go to the dentist every six months, but what about the eye doctor? Eye care is often neglected until one’s eyes tell them it’s time for glasses or at least a new prescription.

But a regular checkup every two years can detect or slow down vision loss due to diseases before the eye sight begins to go.

As January is National Glaucoma Awareness Month, here is a breakdown of the importance of eye care for both youths and adults.

Eye care for children

In New Mexico, eye screenings are required for children enrolled in pre-kindergarten, kindergarten, first grade, third grade, transfer and new students, according to the National Center for Children’s Vision and Eye Health.

But according to optometrist Adrian Tenorio, parents are mistaken if they think that is enough.

“A lot of parents misunderstand school screening as a complete eye exam,” Tenorio said. “But the (school) eye exams are usually looking for nearsightedness because those are the easiest to detect … It’s not a substitution for professional eye screening.”

The Vision and Health Initiative — done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — found that approximately 6.8 percent of children younger than 18 years in the United States have a diagnosed eye and vision condition. And according to data collected by the National Center for Children’s Vision and Eye Health, nearly 3 percent of U.S. children younger than 18 years are blind or visually impaired, defined as having trouble seeing even when wearing glasses or contact lenses.

If a child needs help with seeing, Tenorio said it is especially critical to try and catch it as early as possible because it could affect their learning. Tenorio said it is recommended that at the age of three, children get a complete eye exam by a professional.

“It’s a critical stage where children are learning rapidly,” Tenorio said. “It’s very important for learning to take information from a page to the eye to the brain.”

Read full article: The importance of eye health: from learning to preventing glaucoma

Read Full Article: The importance of eye health: from learning to preventing glaucoma

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