What is a vision screening?
A vision screening is a brief examination that can detect symptoms of a potential vision problem, or unknown existing condition, in the eyes. While a typical vision screening does not diagnose the actual problem, it does offer insight into possible current (or future) medical concerns that should be brought to the attention of an eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist) who can perform a more comprehensive dilated eye examination to assess the situation. If your child needs a vision screening, we offer Tampa-area vision screenings right here in town. Read on to find out more.
Below is a quickfire vision screening Q&A:
How is vision screening performed?
The method depends on the age of the child being screened.
What is the screening process?
Your child’s eyes will be inspected for overall abnormality of shape and/or structure, and for irregularity in pupil shape. Additionally, the red reflex of the eye is tested. It’s the reflection from the lining of the inside of the eye (ie. the thing that causes eyes to look red in photos) and should be equally bright in both eyes. Additionally, corneal light reflex testing, cover testing and standard eye charts will most likely be used.
What is corneal light reflex testing?
The light reflection from the front surface (cornea) of the eye is observed while the child focuses directly on the light. Normally the corneal light reflex is in sharp focus and centered on both pupils, but if the corneal light reflex is not crisp and clear, it may indicate a problem.
What is cover testing?
A test to detect misalignment of the eyes. The person conducting the test covers each eye sequentially to look for an alignment shift of the eyes.
Eye charts. Are those the same thing I was tested on as a kid
Essentially, yes. It is still the best screening method to directly measure visual acuity.
What kinds of eye problems can a vision screening find?
Children are typically first checked for warning signs of amblyopia, an eye disease that can lead to permanent visual impairment unless treated early. Other uncovered problems may include strabismus (eye misalignment), cataracts, glaucoma, ptosis (drooping eyelid), refractive errors such as myopia (“nearsightedness”), hyperopia (“farsightedness”), astigmatism, and other more potentially serious conditions.
If your child has yet to have a vision screening, or you suspect that they may have an eye condition, please contact Physician Partners of America right away for a vision screening so we can help determine if warning signs for potential eye disease are present. It is always better to be safe than sorry, and nothing is more important than the health and well-being our your family. (P.S. We also offer adult vision screenings, too.)