Parenting Tips for Child Visual Development

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Parents, What do we need to be thinking about in terms of our child's visual development?

Here are a few things to consider:

1. How is his or her acuity? Does your child need glasses?

2. Does your child have good visual habits, such as: a) is the toy or paper at a proper length from the eyes? b) how much time does your child spend staring at electronics?

3. Is there sufficient lighting in the room where your child is playing or reading?

4. How is your child's central detail (or macular) vision? Some symptoms of an immature central detail vision may be messy handwriting, having trouble reading a line of script and staying on that line, difficulty in writing in a fairly straight line, eyes that tire easily, etc. Another indicator that the central detail vision is off is if your child has difficulty maintaining eye contact. This is a concern for our sensory kids especially because with an inefficient central detail vision, they may play with their peripheral. If they play with the peripheral excessively they can produce endorphins (that happy chemical in the brain that is found in excess with addicts) and because it feels good they may get stuck there.

5. Sometimes our children have light sensitivity. We would venture a guess that light sensitivity can have many causes, but we do know that one root cause of light sensitivity can be allergies. How crazy is that? Light sensitivity related to the gut? It can look like a vision problem but might really be immune system response.

6. How is your child's visual discrimination? This is the ability to discriminate between visible likeness and differences in size, shape, pattern, form, position, and color.

We encourage you to use this as a checklist to periodically check your child's visual development. If you find your child struggling with central detail vision, light sensitivity, or visual discrimination, we have some ideas on how you can help your child right there at home.

In our webinars and programs, we teach parents how to work with their children to enhance their development. Check out our offerings on the Home Page and Products Page of our website to see if anything resonates with you.

Tom and Julie Meekins

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