Consider this blog a friendly reminder that patients under the age of 19 have their eye exams covered by Manitoba Health. You can have such an exam done once every 2 years. You can also get a rebate on the cost of glasses purchased in Manitoba for children, if you meet certain requirements. These benefits have been put into place by the government; it’s their way of acknowledging the importance of eye exams for children. It’s worth considering why the government considers these exams, and glasses, important enough to cover.

The most obvious reason to cover eye exams is the importance of vision in modern-day learning. A student who is unable to read what the teacher is writing or projecting is less likely to grasp and absorb the material properly. A student who can’t see the words in their book is less likely to develop into an avid reader. You might think your child is struggling to learn, when in actuality, they’re struggling to see. It is to everyone’s advantage to have a well-educated population, a literate population – that may be the primary reason vision care is covered for children in Manitoba.

One reason that’s less apparent but perhaps more important is visual impairments that develop at an early age. Testing for lazy eye and ocular misalignment can be done early; the earlier such issues are noticed, the more readily they can be corrected. The world we live in is hyper-visually oriented, so correcting anomalies as early as possible will help your child thrive.

Children’s eye exams are specifically designed for them; that means that there might be a few adjustments made to make the exam more kid-friendly. In place of a chart full of letters, your optometrist might opt to use a chart of easily recognized symbols. Infants can have eye exams done, and getting your baby’s eyes checked is highly recommended. They, of course, won’t use reading charts, but various tests can be used to check for eye problems that may have developed at this early stage.

When you have a young child, it’s a good idea to talk to your optometrist about different things you can do to help develop hand-eye coordination and other visual skills. What’s nice about most vision skills is that they can be developed through active play and games; in short, your child will be learning without even realizing it!

At Eyes in the Village, we want your child to grow up healthy, so schedule your child’s free eye exam with us. Our team is fun and friendly, so not only will your child get an important medical exam done, they’ll have fun doing it! We hope the experience will be one your child wants to repeat; with Winnipeg eye care this good, we see a bright future ahead for them!