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Why Does My Child Need Bifocals?

While bifocals are most often associated with people over the age of 40, this type of lens can have significant benefits for your child's vision development.

A child needs many abilities to succeed in school and one of the key elements is good vision. In fact, it has been estimated that as much as 80% of the learning a child does occurs through his/her eyes.

That’s why it’s crucial to visit a children’s eye doctor regularly. 

Yearly eye exams:

  • help children perform better at school activities
  • ensures normal vision development
  • allows the children’s eye doctor to detect and prevent the progression of vision issues
  • helps keep your child’s vision comfortable and clear
  • prevents headaches and eye strain
Children’s Eye Care At Market Mall Optometry

Our Calgary eye doctors offer a wide range of children’s vision services including eye exams, contact lens fittings and eye emergency care to help keep your little one’s eyesight healthy and comfortable for many years to come.

Is it time to schedule an eye exam for your child?

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What are Bifocals?

Bifocals are glasses that have corrective lenses containing two different optical powers: one for distance at the top, and one for near vision at the bottom, with a visible dividing line or curve on the lens.

There are four types of bifocals:

  • D Segment
  • Executive
  • Round Segment
  • C Segment

Your eye doctor will prescribe one of these shapes depending on your child’s lifestyle and visual needs.


Why Would My Child Need Bifocal Glasses?

During school, children can spend up to 75% of their day focusing on near tasks. Additionally, some of these require children to make rapid changes in focus, for example, when looking from the desk to the chalkboard.

Bifocal lenses help make it easier for the eyes to focus by providing the lens power needed to see comfortably both up close and in the distance.

Some eye conditions that may require your child to wear bifocals include:

1. Myopia

Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is a type of refractive error where close objects appear clearly, but distant objects seem blurry. During an eye exam, your children’s eye doctor will be able to detect this condition. However, you might want to bring it to your optometrist's attention if your child has any of the following symptoms.

Signs of Myopia:

  • Difficulty seeing distant objects clearly
  • Squinting
  • Eyestrain
  • Headaches
  • Eye fatigue when playing sports

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2. Hyperopia

Hyperopia, also known as farsightedness, is a common type of refractive error where distant objects may be seen more clearly than objects that are near. The symptoms of this eye condition vary from person to person, but there are definitely some common warning signs.

Signs of Hyperopia:

  • Headaches
  • Eye strain
  • Squinting
  • Blurry vision (especially for close objects)

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3. Astigmatism

Astigmatism, which can occur with myopia or hyperopia, is a condition in which the light entering the eye is not refracted equally in all directions. This causes blurred near and distance vision.

A children’s eye doctor can diagnose astigmatism through a variety of tests, including a simple eye exam, light refraction test or cornea measurement.

Some of the common symptoms include:

  • Objects both near and far appear blurred
  • Headaches or eyestrain
  • Constant squinting of the eye

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Choosing The Right Bifocals For Children

Bifocal lenses are available in polycarbonate material, which makes them more durable and safer for active children. However, since there are numerous factors involved in choosing the right bifocals, it’s best to follow your eye doctor’s advice.

Bifocal Contact Lenses

If your child doesn’t want to wear bifocal glasses, there’s no need to worry! Talk to your children’s eye doctor about bifocal contact lenses, which offer a myriad of benefits as compared to eyeglasses, including:

  • Better peripheral vision
  • Greater self-confidence
  • Improved performance in school activities and sports
  • Lower risk of injury caused by broken frames and shattered lenses

Contacts For Children


Call Today

To find out more about the costs and benefits of bifocal eyeglasses for children, contact our Calgary eye doctors at 403-286-4884 or book an eye exam today.

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