How to Get your Baby to Keep their Glasses on
Many young toddlers have eye problems at birth but sometimes parents don’t recognize the problem right away. A pediatrician may tell you that your child has a common eye problem which is called “lazy eye’ or Amblyopia. There are two forms of lazy eye and one can be detected if you notice your child start to cross their eyes. The other form of amblyopia is not that easy to notice. The reason is the muscle to one of the eyes starts to shut down because your child is using one eye to see while the other eye becomes weak. This can cause your child to need glasses, surgery or can cause blindness. The child may not know any better because they have had the problem from birth. They see color in one eye and see black and white blurriness in the other eye which causes the muscle not to be used because the other eye is overcompensating for the good eye. Parents that take their children in for kindergarten or preschool screening is where this can also be detected. If you know that your family has genetic eye issues, have your child checked out very young. There are surgeries a doctor can do to fix the lazy eye and eventually your toddler will grow out of wearing glasses. Some children can have the surgery at quite a young age and the challenge is getting them to keep their glasses on. If the child is around 5 years of age, they understand the importance of wearing glasses because they can see better in school.
Glasses help children develop a normal vision as they keep growing. All babies should have their eyes checked between 6 months and one year old. In certain situations, some babies need glasses when they are a few months old. Don’t worry parents because your infants and toddlers will wear glasses without too much trouble when they realize how much better they can see.
The first thing to do is to make sure your child’s glasses are fitted properly. This includes frames that are comfortable around the nose area, eyes and around the ears. A child’s eyes should always be centered right in the center of the lenses so they can see everything much clearer. Make sure you purchase frames that fit on the same day your child is being fitted for glasses. This is important because parents tend to look for frames their child can grow into.
Make sure you tell your child they look just like the rest of the family members that wear glasses if any of them do. Kids might find this more interesting if they look just like mom and dad or their older siblings.
Have your child watch their favorite TV show or cartoon episodes that also wear glasses. You can also read them stories about characters in the book that wear glasses as well. You might find out that your child loves wearing glasses when they find out that their favorite people and imaginary friends on TV and books wear glasses as well.
When your child first starts wearing their glasses, make sure they only wear them for small periods of time in the beginning. If your child takes them off, rake a few minutes before you place the eyeglasses back on your child. Most toddlers won’t argue about wearing their glasses if they are not tired and in a good frame of mind. In addition, give your child a reward every time they reach a longer point of wearing their glasses for longer lengths of time.
Parents can also use an elastic band to hold the glasses behind the head of your child. Just keep an eye on your baby to make sure that they don’t attempt to try and pull off their glasses by pulling them off from the front of their face.
It’s ok to dote on your baby whenever they are wearing their glasses to make them feel special. Tell them how cute they look and take some pictures of your child in their glasses for your family photo album. Be positive because positive reinforcement goes a long way with helping a baby adjust to something new like wearing glasses.
Remember to be consistent when they take their glasses off and put them back on after a few minutes. You are doing this for your child more than yourself.
Be positive and it’s hard because some baby’s don’t like their glasses and you might feel some guilt because your baby has to wear glasses. If you feel upset because your child keeps throwing their glasses, keep smiling and keep putting the glasses back on your baby.
You can also distract your child as quickly as you place the glasses on their eyes, find something exciting and fun to do so hopefully they forget they are wearing the glasses. It takes a few weeks for your baby to adjust to something new so hang in there. Getting babies to wear glasses is very challenging and glasses can easily get lost as well. When babies are small and wear glasses, that is one of the first things people are going to notice about your child so be prepared. The most important thing is your baby can see.
Around 5% of preschoolers need glasses and don’t have them. These are the kids that don’t show symptoms of needing glasses. As a result, the eyes don’t line up correctly, they have eyes that dart back and forth very quickly, you might notice cloudiness in one of the eyes, they don’t follow moving objects or they squint and tilt their head so they can see things better. This is why it’s important to get an eye checkup for your baby by the age of one year old. Otherwise, you might have the child that falls between the cracks and it’s too late to help them if they become blind in one eye.
Checks are recommended as young as 3 months and between 6 months and a year. In addition, checks for eyes are recommended again with a vision exam again at 3 years old. If you feel your child is having vision issues and is having trouble seeing, or the school refers your child to an eye doctor, make sure you take the advice and schedule a full vision exam for your baby, toddler or small child. If you find out your child needs glasses, remember that this is natural to feel upset and you are probably going to have a struggle on your hands getting your child to wear glasses. Just remember that you are doing this so your child is normal and will be able to see you and your significant other and all the beautiful colors the world has to offer.