ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Signs Your Child Needs Glasses

Updated on May 22, 2013
"Mom, I think I need glasses!"
"Mom, I think I need glasses!" | Source

Is your child complaining of headaches, blurry vision or rubbing his eyes a lot? As a parent, there are many symptoms you need to be aware of concerning your child's vision. If you notice any of the signs below, it would be a good idea to have your child's eyes checked by an optometrist or ophthalmologist.

Popular Eyeglasses for Kids

  • Disney
  • Nickelodeon
  • iCarly
  • Roxy
  • Nike
  • Lilly Pulitzer
  • Converse
  • Scooby Doo
  • Ray Ban

How to Tell if Your Child Needs Glasses

Make sure your child participates in the vision screening at school. Basic vision checks are also normally performed at a child's annual wellness visit at the pediatrician. Both of these are good baseline tests to alert parents to potential vision issues. In addition, parents and teachers are most likely to suspect a child needs to have his vision checked by watching for these symptoms:

  • Headaches
  • Blurry vision
  • Squinting
  • Rubbing eyes
  • Sitting too close to the TV
  • Losing place while reading
  • Covering one eye
  • Excessive tearing

What is the Difference Between an Ophthalmologist and an Optometrist?

Both of these specialist treat eyes, but what is the difference? An optometrist is the primary care physician for anything eye related. They are primarily trained to fit eye glasses and contact lenses but can also detect common eye issues. An ophthalmologist is a medical doctor who has a specialty in the study of eyes. They can treat eye diseases and perform surgeries. So which one do you need to take your child too? Start with the optometrist. If he detects anything more than normal vision refraction problems, then go to a pediatric opthalmologist for further care.

Child ready for first eye exam
Child ready for first eye exam | Source
 A typical Snellen chart. Originally developed by Dutch ophthalmologist Herman Snellen in 1862, to estimate visual acuity. When printed out at this size, the E on line one will be 88.7 mm (3.5 inches) tall and when viewed at a distance of 20 ft (= 60
A typical Snellen chart. Originally developed by Dutch ophthalmologist Herman Snellen in 1862, to estimate visual acuity. When printed out at this size, the E on line one will be 88.7 mm (3.5 inches) tall and when viewed at a distance of 20 ft (= 60 | Source

Nearsightedness or Farsightedness

Your child's visit to the eye doctor may determine he or she is either nearsighted or farsighted. Nearsighted or myopia means that you have difficulty seeing objects from a distance. Farsighted or hyperopia means you have trouble seeing things up close. If you think of each base word meaning the opposite of its definition, it is easy to remember. Example, far means you can't see up close. Near means you can't see far away.

If your child is farsighted, she will likely only need to wear glasses for reading and desk work. Nearsightedness may require glasses to be worn all the time. Of course, this is dependent upon your doctor's assessment and diagnosis. In childhood, sometimes vision problems can correct themselves by wearing corrective lenses for a period of time.

1930's Works Progress Administration poster recommending eye examinations for children having difficulty learning
1930's Works Progress Administration poster recommending eye examinations for children having difficulty learning | Source

Vision Problems can Resemble Learning Difficulties

Sometimes a child may not tell you he or she is having difficulty in seeing because they do not know any different than what they see. With 80 percent of all learning taking place visually, a child's vision is crucial to his learning. According to the American Optometric Association, sometimes undiagnosed vision problems can be mistaken for learning difficulties such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly know as ADHD. If a child is having problems seeing his schoolwork, it makes sense that he may be more fidgety and distracted. If your student is easily distracted and having trouble focusing at school, it may be a good idea to have her vision checked before jumping to other conclusions.

Boy with glasses
Boy with glasses | Source

Make Getting Glasses a Fun Experience

If the vision exam determines your child needs corrective lenses, he or he may feel nervous and self conscious about getting glasses. My nine year-old daughter is farsighted and thought she would be viewed as a nerd by her peers. It was a good opportunity for us to discuss how a person's appearance does not define who they are or their personality.

When it is time to shop for glasses, make a fun afternoon out of it. Go to several stores and let your son or daughter try on whatever style they like just as long as it is the proper fit and is in your budget. Encourage them to make silly faces and serious faces in when they try them on, just to lighten it up a bit. Your child will take their cues on the whole experience from you.

Helpful Hints When Buying Children's Glasses

  1. Do comparison shopping and watch for sales. Lenscrafters, Walmart and Pearle Vision frequently offer sales.
  2. Optometrists are usually the most expensive retailer of glasses, but they may give you the best fit.
  3. Pay the extra charge for the scratch proof coating on the lenses. This will pay off in the long run.
  4. Make sure your child has a hard case to store the glasses.
  5. Determine what amount your vision insurance will cover.
  6. If you have a flex spending account, most eye glasses can be reimbursed.
  7. Discuss with your child your expectations for when the glasses need to be worn.
  8. Make sure your child's teacher is aware that your child needs to wear glasses.

When Should Kids Wear Contact Lenses?

How old do you think children need to be to wear contact lenses?

See results

Age Guidelines for Vision Checks

School Vision Check
Pediatric Opthalmologist
six months
twelve months
preschool (annually)
school age (annually)
suspected vision problems
advanced eye issues, diseases
corrective lenses (annually)


American Optometric Association:

American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus:

American Academy of Pediatrics:

American Academy of Opthalmology:


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)