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Health Team

Cary optometrist: Vision problems developing at younger ages

Posted October 3, 2013

— Claire Patterson's three daughters work hard to keep up with their studies, but recently, 13-year-old Morgan starting having trouble.

"Morgan has complained that she was having trouble focusing on the board at school," Patterson said. 

She squints for distance reading and also has problems close up, her mother says.

"Looking at books, it was harder to see," Morgan said.

So, Patterson took her to Eye Care Associates in Cary to see optometrist Dr. Caroline Silver. 

"Ten percent of preschoolers and 25 percent of children in kindergarten through sixth grade tend to have vision deficiencies," said Silver, who sees a lot of young patients. 

She says reading on computer and phone screens can take its toll.

Phone, computer screen reading can cause vision problems in kids Reading on computers, phones can cause vision problems in kids

"We're starting to see children develop near-sightedness at a younger age than when I first practicing 20 years ago," Silver said. 

She recommends all children see an eye doctor between ages 3 and 5 to detect vision issues before they begin school. Some vision problems can be avoided by eating a healthy diet, limiting computer screen time and wearing sunglasses with UV protection and protective glasses while playing sports.

Corrective lenses will be the answer for Morgan.

"She picked out some cute frames that she likes and we'll pick those up in a few days," Patterson said. 

1 Comment

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  • WageSlave Oct 9, 3:17 p.m.

    Yet another reason to make you think about the purchasing of Ipads for so many school systems.