Eye Exams

Eye exams for your child

It’s worth it to get their eyes checked once a year. The developing eye — from birth through around age 18 — is doing just that Written by Joel Hunter, MD

Joel Hunter, MD
Joel Hunter, MD
Refractive Surgeon, Hunter Vision Updated 05/31/21 9:30 AM

One of the best things about teaming up with Dr. MacDonald at Hunter Vision is that we can help kids now. There’s years of training involved in pediatric eye exams and prescribing glasses for children. I spent those years training in lasers and lenses. So when a kid came in for an exam, I’d ask, “do you want LASIK?” And they’d reply, “I want ice cream.” At which point, I didn’t know what to do.

Dr. MacDonald, on the other hand, is actually an expert on those pediatric eye exams. Plus, she’s somehow able to do those exams in a way that kids really like her throughout the process. I’d say it’s because she’s a mother of three, but I’m a father of two, so it seems like I should just admit she’s better. 

But this isn’t about me, it’s about your kids. It’s worth it to get their eyes checked once a year. The developing eye — from birth through around age 18 — is doing just that. Developing. There are changes in size that create changes in prescription. For most kids, that won’t necessarily mean they could benefit from glasses. But for about one out of three, they certainly could.

The thing with kids is that they usually won’t register blurry vision as abnormal. It happens relatively slowly, usually over a period of years. It feels normal. We end up in “does a fish know it’s wet?” territory. The only foolproof method to find out is an eye exam (for the child, not the fish).

I’ve had the joy of witnessing a kid see clearly for the first time with a new pair of glasses. It’s the best. Almost always, as if by some hardwired programming, the first thing they’ll do is run to look out the window. Then they marvel at seeing trees with individual leaves and grass with individual blades. It’s heartwarming.

I’ll conclude here since I’m getting emotional. But if you’re on the fence about whether to schedule an eye exam for your child, or where to do that, I can’t recommend Dr. MacDonald highly enough. A good eye exam for a little one who needs it can change their whole world! Heck, maybe I’ll even stop in with ice cream, just so they’ll like me too.

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