Helping children care for eyes
Optometrists from Visique Matamata Visioncare are handing out free sunglasses to new entrants throughout Matamata to keep young eyes protected.
Optometrist Nelson Retter will be visiting Matamata Primary School and six other schools in Matamata, to hand out vouchers to new entrants for free sunglasses and educate teachers and parents about eye health.
If parents don’t receive a voucher they can also bring their 5- year- old son or daughter to Visique Matamata Visioncare to collect a voucher and redeem a free pair of sunglasses.
This is the ninth consecutive year Visique has offered all new entrants in New Zealand free sunglasses and this gift is part of its ongoing efforts to encourage New Zealanders to look after their eyes.
‘‘Eighty per cent of UV damage to the eyes is done before people turn 20, so we’re really focused on getting children into the habit of protecting their eyes from UV damage,’’ said Mr Retter.
‘‘ Likewise, 80 per cent of a child’s learning is done visually, so it’s really important that children start school each year with 20/20 vision and they know how to protect their eyes.’’
Mr Retter said one in every five Kiwi children, aged five to 12, suffers from treatable vision problems.
‘‘So we recommend that every child has a full eye examination to pick up any issues quickly.’’
Some children are eligible for a subsidised eye examination, frames and lenses.
Signs that your child may have a vision problem:
Losing their place while reading or using fingers to maintain their place
Avoiding close work particularly reading
Holding reading materials closer than normal
Tending to rub have headaches
One eye drifting or aiming in a different direction than the other
Closing or covering one eye or squinting
Omitting or confusing words when reading
Having a short attention span for their age
Having poor hand- eye ordination for activities playing with a ball
Consistently performing below their potential in their school work.