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Vision Screening. By Brandy Flood. Basic Facts. One in four school aged children have a vision impairment that gets in the way of their learning Vision problems more common in children with disabilities

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vision screening

Vision Screening

By Brandy Flood

basic facts
Basic Facts
  • One in four school aged children have a vision impairment that gets in the way of their learning
  • Vision problems more common in children with disabilities
  • An infant’s eyes should be checked as soon as possible for abnormalities and muscle imbalance to reduce risk of permanent vision loss
  • Early detection improves success of medical treatment
take notice
Take notice!
  • The child’s teacher is usually the first to notice clues in a child’s behavior that might suggest a vision disorder
  • Unlikely that young children will recognize when their vision isn’t normal
  • Special attention should be paid to children with known physical disabilities
  • Delays in identifying vision problems could affect learning process
methods of assessment
Methods of Assessment
  • Any concerns should be discussed with the child’s family
  • Routine screenings are essential
  • Teachers and volunteers can be trained to administer many standardized visual acuity tests
  • Children’s eyes should be checked for
    • Convergence
    • Depth perception
    • Binocular fusion
    • Deviations in pupil position
common disorders
Common disorders
  • Amblyopia
    • “lazy eye”, approximately 2% of children younger than 10 have this.
    • Caused by a muscle imbalance or childhood cataracts resulting in blurred/double vision.
      • Refractive Amblyopia: One type of lazy eye, called refractive amblyopia, is caused when one eye is more nearsighted or farsighted than the other, making it difficult for the eyes to focus together.
      • StrabismicAmblyopia: Another common cause of lazy eye is strabismus.  Strabismus, often referred to as a crossed or wandering eye, is a condition in which the brain is unable to properly align the eyes.
  • Treated by having the child wear a patch over the stronger eye until muscle strength improves in weaker eye . Other methods for treatment include eye drops, corrective glasses, and special eye exercises
  • Teachers may be asked to help give treatment, be supportive, and make accommodations for students.
common disorders cont d
Common disorders (cont’d)
  • Strabismus
    • “crossed eyes”, causes observable misalignment of the child’s eyes . May experience double or blurred vision, images from weaker eye ignored by brain, and gradual loss of vision
    • Children with obvious crossed or wandering eyes have to deal with the self-consciousness arising from questions, stares, and teasing from their peers. 
    • Early recognition is essential for restoring normal vision
    • Several methods are used to treat strabismus:
      • Surgical correction
      • Patching of unaffected eye
      • Eye exercises
common disorders cont d1
Common disorders (cont’d)
  • Myopia
    • “nearsightedness”, meaning they can see near objects but cannot see far clearly
    • Problematic for young children because they move quickly
    • Squinting is common
    • Teachers can note these behaviors and refer children for screening
  • Families should be counseled and encouraged to arrange for professional screening
  • Teachers can help families understand why it is important to follow through with any recommendations
  • Arrangements can be made through pediatrician’s office, public schools, etc.
  • Children who don’t pass initial vision screening should be retested
  • Results should be read with caution because it does not guarantee that there is or isn’t a problem
  • Visual acuity changes over time; VERY important for teachers and families to be aware of children’s visual performance
how would i address this as a teacher
How would I address this as a teacher?
  • I would address the importance of going to the eye doctor and making sure that your vision is okay.
  • If necessary, if children give those with visual impairments any problems or grief, I will construct the class not to.
sources cited
Sources Cited
  • Marotz, R., L. (2008). Health, Safety, and Nutrition for the Young Child. Wadsworth Pub Co.
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