LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Cooing, sitting up and crawling are signs that a baby is growing. Their vision has similiar stages of development, but this process rarely has visible signs.
Optometrists encourage parents to include a trip to the optometrist on the list of well-baby check-ups. Assessments at six to twelve months of age can determine healthy development of vision.
Early detection of eye conditions is the best way to ensure a baby has healthy vision for successful development-now and in the future.
InfantSEE®, a public health program, managed by Optometry Cares® - The AOA Foundation, is designed to ensure that eye and vision care becomes an integral part of infant wellness care to improve a child's quality of life.
Under this program, AOA optometrists provide a comprehensive eye and vision assessments for infants within the first year of life regardless of a family's income or access to insurance coverage.
One in 10 infants is at risk from undiagnosed eye and vision problems, which, if undetected, could lead to permanent vision impairment, and in rare cases, life-threatening health risks.
However, only 14 percent of children from infancy to age six have had a comprehensive eye assessment from an eye care professional, according to the American Optometric Association's Pediatric Eye and Vision study.
In Arkansas, where close to 100 optometrists in the state are InfantSEE providers, great strides are being made to ensure that potential eye and vision problems are detected early.
From October 23-29, the Arkansas Optometric Association will be hosting InfantSEE Week. Learn more by clicking on the link.
The majority of vision problems detected include severe hyperopia (farsightedness), myopia (nearsightedness), congenital glaucoma and congenital cataract. A less common vision problem that can also be detected during an infant's comprehensive eye assessment includes retinoblastoma (eye cancer).