Preparing Kids for Optician Appointments

During elementary school, my sister’s teacher scheduled a consultation with my parents. At this meeting, this caring educational professional talked with my parents about my sister’s potential eye problems. My teacher felt my sibling couldn’t see the board in the front of the classroom. My parents sat down with my sister and talked with her about seeing an eye doctor. Thankfully, my sister visited a trusting optician who knew how to successfully work with younger kids. After receiving her new pair of glasses, she began excelling in school. On this blog, I hope you will discover ways to prepare kids for successful appointments at an optician’s office. Enjoy!

Can You See That? Signs You May Have Age-Related Cataracts


If you are in your forties, age-related vision changes may already be a part of your life, even if you haven't admitted it yet. For many people, the first sign of vision changes occurs gradually as they near middle age. This vision change is typically mild and causes you to have difficulty reading or doing close-up work. It is easily corrected with reading glasses, but not all age-related vision changes are as easy to treat. Cataracts, another common age-related vision problem, must often be corrected with surgery. Learn the warning signs that you may be developing cataracts and learn what you can do about it.

Who Gets Cataracts?

Nearly everyone experiences some cataract formation on the lens of the eye as they age. This can dull your vision and cause colors to look more muted. Because it happens gradually, you may not be aware that you have a problem until you catch yourself struggling to differentiate between your navy socks and your black socks. According to Healthline, 20 million people over the age of 40 have some degree of cataracts in one or both eyes. Of that 20 million, 6 million will have surgery to remove them. Here are some common symptoms of cataracts to watch for:

  • Dimmed or Clouded Vision: You may notice that the world doesn't look quite a bright and cheery as it once did. You may feel like you are looking through or fog or like someone dimmed the lights. You may even find yourself checking the light bulbs or searching for a film on your glasses.
  • Difficulty Driving at Night: You may notice that driving at night becomes more difficult and you can't see the road as well as you used to. This may be especially bothersome on dark, rainy nights. Because the cataracts dim the light that reaches the optic nerve, things look darker than they should.
  • Sensitivity to Bright Lights: You may notice more glare from bright lights, which can also affect your ability to drive at night. Because newly forming cataracts cause a reflection in the eye when bright lights enter, you may notice glare from the sun or other light sources before you notice any other vision changes.
  • Light Halos: Cataracts can also cause you to see a halo around lights and bright objects, such as streetlights, headlights and even the moon and the stars in the sky. But, seeing halos isn't confined to those with cataracts. You may have other underlying conditions or just need a prescription lens change. Take heed if you begin to see halos everywhere, as it may be a sign you have cataracts. Have your eyes examined to be sure.
  • Color Changes: As cataracts progress they turn yellow or brownish and can alter your sense of color perception. If you notice the world taking on a yellowed hue, it may be a sign that you have cataracts that should be removed.
  • Need for Stronger Reading Glasses: If you are in the habit of using drugstore reading glasses and you notice that you need to buy a stronger lens frequently, cataracts may be the real culprit. See your eye doctor to determine the cause of your need for stronger glasses.
  • Double or Distorted Vision: Cataracts interfere with the way light rays are processed in the eye. They may cause it to bounce around at different angles as it hits the uneven surface of your lens. This can cause distorted vision, such as straight lines looking wavy or it can cause multiple images of the object you are focusing on. There are other reasons, for double or distorted vision, of course, but this sign should not be overlooked. Check with your eye doctor to rule out cataracts if you notice distorted vision or see multiple images.

How do you treat cataracts?

During the early stages of cataract growth, changing your environment, such as using brighter light to read, wearing anti-glare glasses and strengthening the prescription in your reading or driving glasses may be all you need to live comfortably. Cataract surgery is typically delayed until the cataracts interfere with your daily functioning. When surgery is performed, the surgeon will remove your old, faded lens and replace it with a new artificial lens. You may see a dramatic improvement in your vision as soon as the eye heals.

If you suspect you may have cataracts, visit your eye doctor at an optical lab for a thorough eye exam. He will work with you to help improve your vision and help you decide when (and if) surgery is right for you.


23 August 2016