If you have a child who needs glasses, I've got a few tips to help you choose the right ones, and help your child adjust to wearing them.
It wasn’t until Flynn was in
kindergarten that we discovered he needed glasses. How could we have not
realized this sooner? It’s not like he had been home with us all the
time, he had already been in pre-school for 2 years. However he was
sitting in the back of the class in kinder and was playing around instead of
doing his work when we first knew something was wrong. He was also
undergoing ADHD testing at the time so we thought his inability to complete
work was primarily because of this diagnosis. We moved him to the front
of the room where the teacher could keep a better eye on him and that seemed to
work, for a little while at least. Then he had a check-up at the
pediatrician’s office. They noticed that something didn’t look quite
right on his eye exam and referred him to an ophthalmologist. After numerous
tests it was determined that he had blurred vision in one eye and he would
Here are a few signs to indicate you
might want to get your child’s eyesight tested:
Do they squint?
Do they sit too close to the
television, or hold a book too close to their face?
Do they have difficulty seeing
signs, or other items at a distance, such as the board in class?
Do they have trouble focusing?
When my son was first told he needed
to wear glasses he didn’t want to. He thought he would be just fine if he
wore them on nights and weekends, but there was no way he was going to wear
them to school. Even at five years old he felt different. His
teacher didn’t wear glasses, and neither did his friends at school. Although his dad and I both do he rarely sees me wearing mine as I normally
need them when I’m working on my computer or reading late at night in
bed. So we made a conscious effort to wear them more when he could see
us. We then pointed out other children and adults wearing glasses as they
walked into school and reminded him that a little girl in his class also wore
Make your child aware of some of
their idols, or favorite cartoon characters who wear glasses too, such as Simon
from Alvin and the Chipmunks, and for older children Harry Potter. Let them make a collage to hang on their wall of their favorites who do wear
glasses. Nick Jr are dedicated to helping younger children overcome the
fear of feeling different when wearing glasses. Yo Gabba Gabba have a
great video ‘I got glasses’, there are Walden and Uniqua printables, and downloadable Backyardigans ‘Glasses are Great’ stickers which are perfect to use on reward charts, or for
your child to decorate their lunch box, pencil case, or their favorite drawing
Here are a few books that kids may
love to help them with this transition too:
Fancy Nancy – Spectacular Spectacles,
by Jane O’Connor
Eliot Jones – Midnight Superhero, by
The Pirate of Kindergarten, by
George Ella Lyon
Let your child be a part of the
process when it comes to choosing glasses. Flynn tried on 13 pairs
before he finally settled on a pair that he absolutely loved (pictured
above). Children are more likely to wear something that they love, but
with everything, this needs to be done within reason. You want to make
sure they choose glasses that are less likely to break, and that are within
your budget. They also need to be comfortable and not pinch the bridge of
their nose. I was thankful that my son chose metal frames. They are
less likely to break, and even though they get bent out of shape often, a quick
trip to the optical shop we purchased them from and they are fixed in under 10
minutes, and for free. Maybe your child would also like to choose the
glasses case, or decorate a plain one if that comes with the glasses you chose.
How often should glasses by worn?
Ensure that you find out just how
often your child needs to wear their glasses and for what activities? Do
they just need them for schoolwork and homework, or do they need to wear them
all the time? Is it okay to not wear them when participating in sports such as
soccer? What about swimming, does your child need prescription goggles?
Do you know how often your child
needs a check-up and to have their eyes tested? Now is the time to ask
and set reminders for booking appointments.
Maintenance and Care
Teach your child how to clean their
glasses and put them in their glasses case when they are not wearing
them. Have a special place where their glasses case is kept so they
always know where to find it, maybe it will be close to their bed for when they
wake up in the morning and so they can put there glasses away as they go to bed
at night. Or if they only need them for school, put it by their backpack
so that they put them on and take them off as they grab their backpack or
return it to it’s special place at the end of the day.
If your child’s glasses are looking
a little out of shape, take them to an optical shop to have them
adjusted. Ours does it for free because we purchased the glasses there,
find out if yours does too.
Purchase an eyeglasses screwdriver
for home, just in case the screw comes loose.
Note: Don’t forget to include details for your child’s
ophthalmologist and reminders for scheduling appointments on MotherKnows.
In the event that you are on vacation and your child loses or breaks their glasses
you may need their details to get a prescription sent through to a optical shop
for a replacement pair.