How well can your child see? You may think it would be obvious, but that can actually be a very difficult question to answer. Without obvious signs such as squinting or sitting close to the TV, vision problems are easy to miss. It happens all the time. Vision problems often show up in unexpected ways. In fact, children who can’t see well are often misdiagnosed with learning or behavioral disabilities. They often find it difficult to focus, and have to work so much harder to keep up with the other children - whether it’s in the classroom or on the soccer field. That can lead to fatigue, frustration and a short attention span.
As we head into the warm summer months, we find ourselves spending more time outside. Although the sunshine means we get to relax in the sun and enjoy outdoor summer activities, it’s not all fun and games when it comes to our eye health.
During the summer, we are exposed to an increased amount of UV radiation, putting us at risk of developing serious vision problems.
While sunburns are visible and can be easily identified, internal eye damage can often go undetected, putting our vision at risk. This is especially dangerous for children.
"Children are exposed to a lot more UV radiation than adults because they spend so much time outside," says Dr. Mark Ross of Eye Spy Optometry. "That exposure adds up over time, and can lead to problems such as cataracts, damage to the cornea and degeneration of the retina."
Are you aware that one child dies every nine hours in Canada due to a preventable injury? The Cost of Injury in Canada report, released June 2015, indicates that preventable injury is the leading cause of death in Canadians ages 1 to 44. It further adds that preventable injuries claim the lives of more children than any other cause in Canada. These injury costs add up to $26.8 billion dollars a year across the country, with Alberta leading the way with $4 billion in costs in 2010, the highest number in all provinces.
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