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Vision Screenings

Vision screening is a very important way to identify vision problems. During an exam the doctor looks for eye disease and checks to see if the eyes are working properly. Children with a family history of childhood vision problems are more likely to have eye problems.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that children have their eyes checked by a pediatrician at the following ages:


All babies should have their eyes checked for infections, defects, cataracts, or glaucoma before leaving the hospital. This is especially true for premature babies, babies who were given oxygen for an extended period, and babies with multiple medical problems.

By 6 Months of Age

As part of each well-child visit, eye health, vision development, and alignment of the eyes should be checked.

At 3 to 4 Years of Age

Eyes and vision should be checked for any abnormalities that may cause problems with later development.

At 5 Years of Age and Older

Vision in each eye should be checked separately every year. If a problem is found during routine eye exams, your child's doctor may have your child see a pediatric ophthalmologist. A pediatric ophthalmologist is an eye doctor trained and experienced in the care of children's eye problems.

Learning Disabilities

Learning disabilities are quite common in childhood years and have many causes. The eyes are often suspected but are almost never the cause of learning problems. Vision therapy will not improve a learning disability. Your child's doctor may refer your child for a thorough evaluation by an educational specialist to find the cause.

Last Updated
Your Child's Eyes (Copyright © 2005 American Academy of Pediatrics, Updated 11/2011)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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