Back to School Eye Exams Critical

RENO, Nev. -- School is almost back in session but there is still one thing parents need to do before sending their kids back to school.

Children who have trouble both inside and outside of the class room have a problem that doctors often overlook. If you think your child has a learning disability or is acting out, then it might just be a vision problem.

One in five kids have compromised vision that affects their everyday life, from reading to playing ball with some friends. Some of these problems, unfortunately go undetected.

""He had some trouble reading. He also had some trouble in school and also in depth perception. He was having trouble catching the ball and playing some sports," Liz Williams, a mom of a son in vision therapy said.

These are just some signs that your child may have a vision problem.

"Looking at the number of kids right now in the classroom, between 20 and 33% of kids have undiagnosed vision problems," Dr. Meier of Meier Eye and Vision said.

Many of these problems are often overlooked in regular vision screenings.

"It's not tested as extensively as we think it should and 80 percent of learning takes place through your vision so you can see why that's important." Dr. Smith, optometrist, said.

Kids like seven year old Elsa Kallmes who struggled in school are often misunderstood.

"Learning disabilities are often misdiagnosed when it's often just a vision problem," Dr. Smith said.

After up to three months of treatment and eye training, their vision is restored to 20/20.

"I can see better. I can read better. I can do homework better," Vision therapy graduate, A.J. Campanaro said.

Some signs parents and teachers should look out for:

"If a child is laying down like this that means they can't use both their eyes together. If they start eating the book and they're having focusing problems then they need treatment." Dr. Meier said.

The good news is the problems are treatable and the results are eye-opening.

"It can really make a difference in a child's life," Williams said.


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