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What's the difference between vision screenings and eye exams?

Your child probably had or will soon have a vision screening at school by now. It's a wonderful way to uncover possible visual issues. I often get asked by parents, "Isn't that an eye exam?" Although there are some organizations that do provide full eye exams at schools, most vision screenings performed at school and even at a pediatrician's office are a small subset of what we do in a comprehensive eye examination.

During a comprehensive eye exam, we perform the same tests done at vision screenings but dive in a little further to evaluate how your child's eyes are working together and how the focusing muscles are acting. We also check the external and internal health of the eyes using special microscopes and lenses.

The eyes of children can often have unpredictable focusing action, so we often use special dilation drops for two reasons in children exams. It allow us to get the best possible view inside the eye for evaluating the inside of the eye. It also relaxes the focusing muscles so that we are able to get a steady reading that will be used for glasses if necessary.

We also have various eye charts and tools to assess vision and to obtain a prescription even if your child is still learning the alphabet or is a little shy.

Sometimes your child will pass a vision screening, but may still have issues focusing on near tasks for a long period of time or may be getting headaches. A comprehensive eye exam can help uncover hidden issues and help your child have the best vision possible!

Please don't hesitate to give our office a call for more information or better yet, schedule your child's exam today at Beachwood Familly Eye Care!

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