My 10 year old recently failed a vision screening at the pediatrician's office. We saw an optometrist today. She said he needs glasses to help him see things far away better and he only needs to wear them sometimes- if he's having trouble seeing the board at school or if we go to the movies, a baseball game, a road trip where we're looking for signs, things like that. She said his vision is 20/40 far away and 20/20 up close. He was squinting and having a hard time with keeping his eyes open wide enough, then keeping them open too wide so they were watering and he kept rubbing them, etc. throughout the exam...should I even be certain they got the results right? They had him read letters and did a puff of air in his eyes but no drops or anything else.
They gave me his prescription and I left, planning to purchase the glasses elsewhere. I got home and looked on the prescription- it says:
What does that mean? I looked up the axis thing and it says something about astigmatism, which I've heard of but I'm unsure what it is. Does it sound right that he only needs to wear them sometimes? Should I be seeking a second opinion? Thank you.
I would consider seeing a pediatric ophthalmologist for a second opinion to perform a cycloplegic refraction and make sure the prescription is accurate. If it is, then your son has mild myopia or nearsightedness and using the glasses only when absolutely necessary is fine. Astigmatism is common and nothing to worry about.
Thank you very much for your response. Pediatric ophthalmologists are hard to come by in our area- the nearest one is over an hour from where we live. Could it harm him to purchase glasses with this prescription for now and possibly schedule his next exam with a pediatric ophthalmologist? We can arrange for a quicker exam if it is necessary, just wondering how important you think that might be. Thank you again for your input!
Hi Heather, not really important...I had myopic astigmatism as a kid, I squinted my way along, until I was 20 and had to sit way in the back of a very big organic chemistry classroom. Then I finally got glasses. Didn't hurt my eyes, cuz a few years later I got a chief-of-staff USAF waiver to enter USAF pilot training with my excessive refractive error. Flew AF planes for 20 years. No glasses or slightly-off prescription specs not really likely to cause any lasting ill effect I'd say. My $0.02
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