Children’s eye health and vision are often overlooked

“By treating vision and ocular health with the same importance as we do with dental health, we can help ensure our children are set up for success in the long run,” says Dr. Langis Michaud, optometrist, professor at the School of Optometry of the Université de Montréal, eye health expert and Essilor spokesperson.

According to research, 80% of all learning occurs through vision. Yet, results from this new survey reveals that an estimated 12,000 children across the province (3.1%) experienced a drop in school performance before parents realised that there was a visual problem.

“Children will not complain if their eyes are not well coordinated or if they have difficulty seeing the board at school. Some of these situations are treatable with exercises or ophthalmic lenses, but they go untreated if they are not detected. Many parents across Quebec may benefit from learning more about how preventive eye care can help maintain their children’s academic success,” explains Dr. Langis Michaud.

Only one third of parents, who took part in the new survey, indicated that their children’s need for corrective lenses was identified during a regular visit to an eye doctor or their family physician. “By 2050, it is estimated that half of the world’s populations will be myopic, and more concerning, 10% highly myopic. With myopia cases among children increasing, comprehensive eye exams by an optometrist should be a top priority for parents,” adds Dr. Langis Michaud.
With the survey finding that almost half (44.7%) of children struggling with their vision before their need for corrective lenses are recognized, an eye exam with an optometrist can make a big difference in a child’s life.

About the survey

An online survey was conducted March 1st – 2nd, 2023. Respondents were recruited from an online audience panel on the basis of being a Canadian citizen between 25 and 55 with a child between the ages of 5 and 14. Geographical quotas were set, proportionally matching the number of respondents from Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario, Prairies, BC, and North. Additionally, 200 French respondents were initially targeted. In total, 1,019 qualified respondents completed the survey.
Were this a probability sample, the margin of error would be +/- 3% with 95% confidence.

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