17 answers

What Age Do You Take Your Child to the Eye Dr.?

My 4 year old has been complaing of headaches around the same time everyday. He does watch cartoons and play video games but only for a limited time each day. I talked with nurse at my pediatricians office and they do not seem concerned. Should I take him for a an eye visit? My husband and I both have horrible vision. I have been in glasses since 6yrs old and contact since 12 due to the rapid progession of my eyes. Am I over reacting?

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What do you have to lose? It's not going to hurt to take him to the eye doctor and if it turns out there's nothing wrong, then all you've wasted is a little time but you've gained valuable piece of mind. And if it turns out that there is a problem, early treatment might prevent it from progressing or even correct the problem. But make sure you find a doctor that specializes in children. At that age, you can't really fully on them telling you what they can or can't see during the exam but a doctor that is experienced in dealing with children will be able to better diagnose any problems.

1 mom found this helpful

C.,

I would not wait one minute. We have a friend who has a 6 yr old little girl that started complaining about headaches also & at around the same time every day also. They ended up taking her to the pediatrician & he recommended that they take her to an eye specialist & then he recommended them go get an MRI. To make a long story short, the little girl ended up having an inoperable brain tumor called Diffuse Pontine Glioma. When it comes to your children & their heads please don't ignore your instinct. Trinity now has to go to radiatian M-F at 2:00 & X-Rays & MRI's once a week. That is just a lot for a little 6 yr old to go through. Please call your pediatrician & see what he recommends you doing. I hope & pray that everything is ok with you son.
M.

1 mom found this helpful

My son who is now 10 started getting headaches too at a young age. He has been in glasses for the last 3 years. My oldest son started wearing glasses in kindergarten. I don't think your overreacting. I would go ahead and take him to the eye doctor, my kids all started going at the age of 5. Good Luck.

My kids started at birth since they have a chance of genetic cataracts, but, our doc sees them every year for a full exam. My advice to to make sure you go to an MD doc (optomologist-sp?) instead of an optomotrist. You usually can use your medical insurance -- which worked out great since we don't have vision coverage! But they have special charts for kids who don't know their letters or numbers yet. Very interesting to watch!

Light sensitivity can be caused by a lack of Omegs-3 fatty acids.
My DD began complaining of light sensitivity at age 4 1/2. We had her vision checked and she has better than normal vision. But we began feeding her more fish and giving her an occasional omega-3 supplements because her eyes still hurt whenever she was around bright lights (BTW: chewable omega-3's are expensive; so we try to modify her natural diet as much as possible to be sure she is getting what she needs Before giving her a tablet) . She still complains occasionally when she has not had enough omega-3 in her diet.

RPocai

I think that for kids, if there's any family history of vision problems, take them as soon as they will see them. According to my ophthalmologist, astigmatisms can be hereditary(not sure if you have any history of that). The sooner diagnosed means the less chance of their eyes deteriorating quickly. I've been in glasses since I was 12, contacts since 15. When I started out, my contact RX was about a 2.75 or so. Now, I'm 26 and my prescription is 4.75 and 5.25. I hope that makes sense to those who wear contacts. In other words, my eyes are much worse now than they were then. Sooner is always better when it comes to health. :)

Take your son now! If he has vision problems that could be corrected the cut off age is just around 4. It was evident with my daughter that she needed vision correction at 12 months. She is a severe case but she has been through 3 surgeries. My dr has always applauded me for getting her in so soon because this is something that needs to be corrected early. I think its absolutely rediculous that pediatricians don't even look at thier eyes till 4 when it can be too late. The chances of your son having eye issues since you and your husband have vision issues is pretty high. I don't know where you are but I reccomend Dr. Everrett Moody. He's a pediatric opthalmologist. His office is in Irving and I think he also works out of a Lewisville office once a month. Worth the drive for sure! Good luck and if you have further questions feel free to ask.

Follow your instincts. Be prepared for a shock if you go to a child specialist. Big bucks! I am opting to do a simple eye check at preschool for a nominal 7.00 fee and follow up with the specialist only if indicated. An old friend of mine who is an accomplished Doctor in another state was thought to be mentally retarded until they realized that he needed glasses in grade school. The rest is history. I don't believe you can assume anything!
Best of luck!
C. S.

When my son was 4 and in pre-k, I suspected he wasn't seeing as well as he should. His teachers totally blew it off and said he seemed fine but a mother's instinct is pretty much always on the mark. We have an outstanding pedi who listens and acts on our concerns and so he did an eye screen in his office. Those tests can only do so much and he told us that as well. The test he did showed that there was a problem but couldn't tell the extent so he sent us to a specialist. My son ended up in glasses from having astigmatism. I told his teachers: See! I told you he wasn't just not "wanting" to do his classwork - the child couldn't see!" Anyway, he's almost 7 now and has done great in glasses. It's always better to listen to your instincts. If it is not your child's eyes that is causing the headaches at that young of an age, then I would take him to a different pedi that will find out why.

Sounds like your best bet would be to take him to the eye doctor; better to catch something now than have it get worse. Also, I know this program doesn't apply to your kiddo because of his age, but in case anyone else needs it...there is a program called InfantSEE (infantsee.org)that gives free vision screening for children under 1. We took our son and it is a very basic & quick check of the eyes. Hope all goes well with your boy...take care.

My 8 year old began wearing reading glasses this year. We were referred to the eye doctor by his pediatrician because he failed an in office exam during his yearly physical. If your pediatrician isn't concerned, I wouldn't worry. If you are still worried then I would go ahead and schedule an appointment on your own. I took my son to the optometrist(sp?) located in our local walmart. It wasn't very expensive and I was able to purchase his reading glasses right there too. The only obstacle you may face due to your child's age is that if he doesn't know his letters very well he may need to see an eye doctor that is able to administer an exam with pictures for his age group.

Hi C.--I told my child's peditrician when she was about 9 months old that I thought she couldn't see. Her doctor referred me to a specialist (ophthalmologist). It was expensive but my instincts were true--my daughter is severely far-sighted!! She started wearing glasses when she was 11 months old and is 3 now and doing fine. If you think your child has any disability, it is best to start early. So go get started!

HI C., I work in ophthamology and age of 4 would not be unreasonable to see an eye doctor (pediatric). Since both the parents are nearsighted/farsighted it would not be unlikely that your child might be. I would like to mention that vision is not normally a cause for headaches and if they were if would be an all day thing not just at a certain time.
Drs David Stager Sr. or Jr. or Dr. Pricilla Berry is who we normally recommend. I hope this helps, and don't worry the chances of it being anything at all would be unlikely. L.

Hello C.,
You are not over reacting, instead I think that you are doing the right thing. In my case I have one of my kids that has horrible vision, he is 10 and he is already in contacts because of his glasses being so thick, his father has perfect vision but I am the one that has astigmatism so honestly I would take him because is better to be safe than sorry. I take my kids to Dr. Bazan on Spring Creek at Sam's Club in Plano He is very affordable, answears all your questions and very good with kids. Good luck to you and your little ones!!
Best regards,

We took my daughter to the eye doctor when she was 5. My husband noticed her eyes crossing before her doctor did, and knew she needed to go see an eye doctor. Before going to the eye doctor, she would freak out about everything, was scared to death of going into a pool. It turned out she had stigmatism in both eyes, and she was near sited, and needed glasses very bad. My husband looked through her glasses, and said they were as strong as his, and he started wearing glasses when he was 4. We were thankful we found out she needed glasses before she started kindergarden. My daughter is now 13, and just got contacts before school started this year. The first day my daughter had her glasses, she could not bieleve how blue the sky was, and was amazed at how different things looked with her glasses. She was even able to go swimming without freaking out, without her glasses, of coarse. 4 is a good age to start them out at the eye doctor. It is better to know if they are going to need glasses before they start school. We saw Dr. Stager Jr. in Plano, he was very good, and recammended to us. His phone number is ###-###-####.

J.

Because of my mine and my husband bad vision we took our son to the eye doctor at 3. The doctor happened to be a really good friend mine so he was able to tell me about what age he thinks our son will need glass. I know it is a bit of a drive but his name is Dr. Dover and he is located in Duncanville. I have been seeing him about my eyes since I was 6 years old and the strange thing is that my husband has been seeing him since he was 12. He is very well known in Duncanville. I you want to check him out he is awesome with kids. Good luck in what every you decide but I would take him to the doctor.

I just took my 7 yr old in for an exam, and asked our doctor about my 3 yr old. He said he usually starts them at 4. Any younger, and they need to see a pediatric specialist. So I say take your son in, just to be sure. It certainly can't hurt.

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