Pediatric Eye Examinations

Kids playing tug of war while wearing glasses

Kids / Children’s Eye Exams provided by Our Optometrists

At what age should a child have a first eye exam?

Children’s Eye Doctor – Care & Examinations

Children should have their first routine eye examination between two and three years of age

However, if there are concerns such as an eye turn, frequent rubbing and blinking, infections or failure to meet developmental milestones, infants, as young as 6 months of age, can be examined by our eye doctors.

Eye examinations for children are crucial as 1 in 4 school-aged children have undiagnosed vision problems that can adversely affect their ability to learn.

Your child does not need to be able to read or to identify letters to have an eye examination.

Request your child’s eye appointment with our optometrists at our Gloucester clinic or at our Almonte clinic.

Appointment Request for Gloucester Clinic

Fill in this quick form and we’ll contact you to book your appointment. You may use our longer form if you know dates / times you’d like to request.

Almonte Appointments

If West Ottawa is more convenient for you, remember that we also have an Almonte location!

What is the cost of a children’s eye exam?

Kids Eye Exams: Free Annual exams up to age 19

OHIP covers a comprehensive eye examination once per year for children and adolescents in Ontario up to 19 years of age.

It’s widely quoted that 80% of learning is done visually, making children’s eye health absolutely essential.

No need to put off your kids’ eye test — make it a regular part of your child’s eye care.

Review our blog posts with important tips about your child’s vision and eye health. Please scroll down to see some of our most popular blog posts.

Pediatric optometrist Dr. Evelyn St. George
Regular children’s eye exams are important

What is the cost of glasses for young children?

Free Eyeglasses for 4-year old Children in JK

Gloucester Family Optometrists and Almonte Family Optometrists participate in the Eye See Eye Learn (ESEL) program offered by the Ontario Association of Optometrists.

The ESEL program provides one pair of glasses at no charge, to every 4-year old child in Junior Kindergarten who requires them.

A poster for the Eye See..Eye Learn vision campaign for schoolage children.

Important Information for Children’s Vision & Eye Health

Why Eye Exams Really Matter for Your Child

Have you noticed that your child:

  • sits too close to the TV
  • has poor hand-eye coordination
  • skips lines when reading or frequently loses their place
  • has frequently watery eyes

Click on the infographic here for a full list of possible red flags.

We know that an undetected vision or eye health problem can affect a child’s academic performance, but have you also considered how it might affect your child’s behaviour and social skills?

“Most parents and guardians aren’t aware that an undiagnosed vision problem goes beyond poor academic performance,” says optometrist and member of the Ontario Association of Optometrists, Dr. Rajvinder Pabla.

Regular eye exams for children

In fact, poor vision can lead to reduced social interaction because of the inability to see properly.

Read the full blog post and find out why regular eye exams are so important for your child.

Eye Health Infographic

Signs your child may have a vision problem - click to expand this infographic about kids eye care

Myopia in Children

A new study on nearsightedness in Canadian children has revealed a big jump in this condition between grades 1 to 8. The research tells of a fivefold increase in cases in this period for students, noting that a third of cases are believed to be undiagnosed and therefore uncorrected.

The research team, from the University of Waterloo and CNIB, noted that myopia rises from just 6% of children ages 6 to 8 to nearly 29% in children ages 11 to 13.

In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) has noted that myopia is “increasing globally at an alarming rate” and can add more pressure to the risks for vision impairment.

Read the full blog post about myopia in children

Are your kids wearing sunglasses?

We often forget that children’s eyes are actually more sensitive than our adults eyes to UV rays. The sun’s rays damage the outer layers of the eyes in the very same way that it can harm our skin.

Damage to eyes incurred in childhood won’t appear for many years, but the most damage can be done in this early period. Down the road, issues like macular degeneration can be accelerated because of this early, unchecked exposure.

We usually remember hats for our children, whether for warmth in winter or sun protection in summer, but appropriate eye protection should include sunglasses.

The most important considerations in choosing sunglasses for any age include 100% UV protection and larger lenses. The more lens coverage the better. Polarized lenses are not essential, but really help to reduce the harsh glare from reflective surfaces.

Little girl wearing sunglasses - protect your kids' eyes with sunglasses

Of course, kids are often clumsier with accessories and sunglasses can be broken.

You don’t need to pay a fortune for adequate protection; many sunglasses options come at affordable prices. Just look for the 100% UV protection guarantee.

Read the full blog post about sunglasses