Children’s Vision Centre
Good vision is important for a child’s educational, physical and social development. Approximately 1 in 4 Australian children suffer from an undetected vision problem. It is, therefore, important to be aware of the possible signs of a vision problem to give every child the best chance of reaching their full learning potential. Undetected eye problems can prevent normal visual development and can interfere with learning, inhibit sport participation or create general frustration. The Optometrists Association Australia recommends that children have a full eye examination before starting school, or sooner if a problem arises. At Albert Park Children’s Vision Centre we understand how crucial early detection of vision problems can be. Through our children’s vision campaign, we aim to educate both teachers and parents about the importance of regular eye examinations. Albert Park Children’s Vision Centre was established in 2004 and our behavioural optometrist Daniel, is available on Monday afternoons and all day Wednesdays for appointments.
Daniel Adler is a behavioural optometrist who has done further studies in binocular and children’s vision. He is also therapeutically endorsed. Daniel lectures to optometrists and ophthalmologists regarding new methods for treating Adult Amblyopia (lazy eye) by way of perceptual learning.
He has also published several peer-reviewed papers in relation to eye movement and vision development in children.
Assessment & Training
Beyond a standard functional vision test, we offer visual perceptual assessment, a “visual information processing evaluation” which probes the child’s ability to understand, interpret and remember what they see, together with the child’s ability to link vision to language. The assessment enables us to determine whether the child’s present visual perceptual development is at the expected level for their age or grade. The purpose of a Perceptual Assessment is to assist these children by making practical recommendations to help with their learning. Written reports for families and schools are provided following assessment. Visual Perceptual Assessment takes up to an hour and is scheduled following the first visit after discussion with the family and the school. We also offer vision training to improve vision skills such as eye movement control and eye coordination. Vision training address the lack of efficient control over the eye muscles, both those located inside the eyes for focusing, and those surrounding the eyes, which allow comfortable single vision.
We suggest that children see a behavioral optometrist for a comprehensive eye examination during this most important developmental period. Having your child tested before the age of 3 will give them the best chance of treating problems. Too often this detection occurs in the later stages of a child’s development which ultimately limits the success of treatment. Best results are achieved when treatment starts as young as possible and becomes much less successful after the age of 8. The Maternal and Child Health Nurse or the Family GP can refer children to us, or parents can attend without a referral if they have concerns regarding their child.
We recommend that children’s eyes be checked regularly throughout their school life. Behavioral optometrists specialise in children’s vision and are specifically trained to detect and treat eye problems that exist during childhood. A delay in the development of any part of the visual system can have an impact on the total performance at school. This can affect reading, concentration and behaviour in the classroom.