Follow Us:

What is The Right Age to Take Your Child to the Eye Doctor?

Being able to see clearly is incredibly important to a child’s overall development. That’s why the American Optometric Association (AOA) recommends that your child visits a kid’s eye doctor as early as 6 months of age.

Although serious vision problems during childhood are rare, early children’s eye exams are key to picking up any problems such as amblyopia (lazy eye) and strabismus (crossed eyes) and managing them as early as possible.

At our Calgary optometry clinic, our kid’s eye doctors provide comprehensive testing services for children of all ages to protect their vision and ensure the long-term health of their eyes.


Why Are Early Children’s Eye Exams Important?

Your child’s eyes are special. In the early years, vision helps them find out more about the world around them. Later, as they go through school, their eyesight allows them to learn and discover - in fact, about 80% of what is taught in schools is presented visually.

Visiting a kid’s eye doctor early to ensure your child can see clearly is very important to their overall development. The following visual skills are needed for learning:

  • Near/distance vision
  • Hand-eye coordination
  • Eye-teaming skills
  • Eye movement skills
  • Focusing skills
  • Peripheral awareness

During a comprehensive children’s eye exam, our optometrists are able to check to see if everything is developing correctly and detect any early visual problems before they lead to more serious complications.


How Soon (& How Often) Should My Child Visit a Kid’s Eye Doctor?

It is recommended that your kid sees a children’s eye doctor at 3 years of age, before entering the 1st grade and again at about age 5-6.

Vision should be checked at least once every two years if no eye disorders are present. Children who wear eyeglasses should have an annual exam, or as recommended by your kid’s eye doctor.

Here is a breakdown on how soon (and how often) you should schedule a children’s eye exam:

Newborns & Infants (< 6 months old)
Newborns should be checked for general eye health by a pediatrician or family physician in the hospital nursery.

HIGH-RISK newborns (e.g. those with a family history of eye problems or obvious vision irregularities) should be examined by a children’s eye doctor.

1 year old

In the first year of life, all infants should be routinely screened for eye health during checkups with the family doctor.

3 ½ years

At this age, children should visit a qualified kid’s eye doctor for a visual acuity test and eye health screening.

5 years old

Your child should have their vision and eye alignment checked during a comprehensive children’s eye exam.

Age 6 onwards

Routine screenings with the kid’s eye doctor are recommended.

  • Annually for children wearing prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses
  • Once every two years for children without vision problems.

Warning Signs of Vision Problems in Children

It is often difficult to tell whether your child has eyesight problems, which is why regular children’s eye exams are crucial.

However, there are a number of things you can look out for including:

  • Frequent eye rubbing
  • Consistently sitting too close to the TV or holding a book too close
  • Losing their place while reading or using a finger to guide their eyes
  • Straining their eyes or tilting their head to see better
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Excessive tearing
  • Avoiding activities that require near vision such as watching TV or doing homework
  • Avoiding activities that require distance vision such as participating in sports

If your child is displaying any of the above symptoms, schedule an appointment with a kid’s eye doctor as soon as possible.

If detected immediately, any ocular issue has a higher chance of being treated successfully, restoring your child’s clear vision and protecting their eye health for many years to come.

Is your child displaying signs of a vision problem?


Learn More

To learn more about what to expect during children’s eye exams and how our Calgary kid’s eye doctors can help protect your child’s eyes, contact our optometry clinic today at 403-286-4884.

Share This Post:

Related Posts

Contact Market Mall Optometry Today!

We are located next to Milestones by the North entrance of Market Mall.
Our knowledgable and professional staff can answer all your questions. Call us today at 403-286-4884 or fill out the form below:

Market Mall Optometry
Have Questions? Call Us Today At

TopProductsVisit UsContact UsBook Online
TopVisit UsServicesBook OnlineCall Us