As a parent, it is crucial that you ensure that your child has a vision exam at an optometrist or vision center. You may be expecting that the eye doctor will simply stand your child at a line before a chart full of letters to assess how well they can see, but the average vision test for children is much more comprehensive. Here are a few of the tests and assessments you should expect to happen during your visit beyond reading the Snellen chart.
Depth Perception Test
Do not be surprised to see the eye doctor whip out a small book and hand your child a pair of 3D glasses once they are seated in the exam room. This is a test that is given to measure depth perception. The book will offer up pictures that can be viewed in different ways according to how the eyes and brain react. For example, your child may be shown a picture that offers a serious of shapes and asked which one is closer or further away.
Peripheral Vision Test
Problems with peripheral vision can be a serious concern for your child. During the exam, your child will be asked to look straight ahead while covering either the left or right eye with their hand. The specialist will then make several hand gestures at varying levels that are directly located in the peripheral vision zones. While making these gestures, your youngster will be asked to identify what they see without moving their eyes from a straightforward stance.
Color Perception Test
Your child will be shown a serious of circular pictures that each have a number within them as a series of dots. They will be asked what numbers they see or if they see numbers at all. This is not a playful game, but a test to measure how well your child is perceiving colors. Color perception issues can indicate that your child is experiencing color blindness, which could be related to genetics and affect their overall vision.
Pupil Dilation Test
During the exam the optometrist may use eye drops to dilate the pupils. This will give the doctor a closer look at the back of your child's eye where some issues, such as retinal disconnection and macular degeneration, can be viewed. The effects of this test can last for several hours after the test, so make sure you have a pair of sunglasses on hand to keep their eyes protected while you are outdoors.
When you take your little one in for an eye exam, it is always helpful if you understand the various types of tests that will be given. Talk to your optometrist, like Richards Charles A OD, about any questions you have pertaining to the tests that are given and why.