test

SCROLL DOWN

Astigmatism in children: what are the warning signs?

Book a free consultation

02
Sep
2016

It’s important to remember that your child doesn’t have to be able to read or even talk in order to have an eye test. Children rarely complain about their sight which makes regular checks even more important, especially for determining conditions such as Astigmatism, where it’s hard to notice the symptoms.

What is astigmatism?

cornea diagramAstigmatism is a common condition where the cornea or lens of the eye isn’t a perfect curve, causing blurred or distorted vision. Like nearsightedness and farsightedness, astigmatism is a refractive error, meaning it’s not an eye disease or eye health problem – it’s simply a problem with how the eye focuses on light.

Eyes are naturally spherical in shape, but the eye of someone who has this condition is shaped more like a rugby ball. This means that when light enters the eye it’s refracted more in one direction than the other, allowing only part of the object to be in focus – resulting in blurred vision. In most cases with children, astigmatism is inherited and is often present at birth. However if left undiagnosed, it can lead to a lazy eye.

Whilst this condition is often present from birth, the NHS have listed other potential causes

  • Injuries to the cornea, for example from an infection that scars the cornea
  • Eye conditions that affect the eyelid and distort the cornea as a result
  • Changes to the cornea as a result of eye surgery
  • keratoconus and keratoglobus – eye conditions that cause the cornea to bulge, get thinner and change shape

What are the warning signs?

tired children eyesYou will probably not notice anything wrong with your child’s vision if they have astigmatism. That’s not unusual as children will often accept poor vision without saying anything. After all, they may never have seen the world in focus so won’t know any different. However children with this condition may experience symptoms including:

  • Difficulty focusing on printed words
  • Eyestrain
  • Headaches
  • Tired eyes
  • Sensitivity to light

Testing for astigmatism in children 

A number of tests can be used if astigmatism is suspected. Below is an overview of the two most common tests for children:

  • Visual acuity test. This test assess your child’s ability to focus on objects at different distances. It usually involves reading letters on a board, with the letters becoming progressively smaller on each line of the chart
  • Keratometer test. A device called a keratometer can measure the degree of corneal astigmatism. It measures how light is being focused by the cornea and can detect irregularities in the curve of the cornea, by determining the steepest and flattest curves

How is astigmatism treated?

Almost all types of the condition can be corrected with properly prescribed glasses or special corrective lenses called toric lenses are prescribed. These corrective lenses bend the incoming light rays in a way that compensates for the error caused by faulty refraction so that images are properly received onto the retina. After performing the tests mentioned above, your optician will determine the ideal toric lens prescription for your child’s astigmatism. Glasses that are prescribed for this condition have greater strength in one direction of the lens than in the opposite direction. A prescription for astigmatism will have several numbers and will look something like this: -2.00 +2.50 X 90

Astigmatism is very common, with research suggesting most of us are born with some degree of it. Reading and concentrating at school may be affected if a child goes undiagnosed. Therefore, regular eye tests are extremely important.

kid eye test

Sources

NHS

Net Doctor

Read more on eye health, laser eye surgery and vision, here

By: David

If you are interested in vision correction at Focus Clinic please call us on 0207 307 8250 and book a free consultation.

Book your FREE consultation
Related Articles
  • novelty contacts

    Novelty contacts this Halloween: trick or treat?

    Novelty contacts are extremely popular around this time of year and whilst we all want to have the scariest Halloween costume, it is not worth risking your vision by misusing these special-effects lenses. What are novelty contact lenses? Did you need a prescription to wear novelty contact lenses? If you are thinking about wearing novelty […]

    Learn more
  • Is your child at risk of Myopia?

    Is your child at risk of myopia?

    Many children aren’t aware they have a vision problem and will generally try to adapt, without knowing they could see better – as a parent, you’re the best person to help find the signs. Myopia, or short-sightedness, is a very common eye condition in children that causes distant objects to appear blurred, while close objects […]

    Learn more
  • how to accentuate your eye colour

    How to accentuate your eye colour after laser eye surgery

    People choose to have laser eye surgery for a variety of different reasons. To avoid the hassle of glasses and contact lenses, to gain freedom to fully enjoy sporting pursuits or to simply gain a confidence boost. Whatever your motivation, you will probably find that you will be showing off your beautiful eyes for the very […]

    Learn more
  • synesthesia

    Synesthesia: The blending of the senses

    Have you ever looked at the number three and decided that its colour is red? Or perhaps you’ve been at a concert and the sound of the guitar you can actually feel on the side of your arm, whilst the vocalist you can feel on your right ankle? These experiences may be a sign you […]

    Learn more
  • 6 reasons why women could be more prone to eye problems than men

    6 Reasons Why Women Could Be More Prone to Eye Problems Than Men

    Studies now show that there is a gap between both sexes in regards to eye diseases and vision problems. Women are more likely than men to lose their vision or experience a variety of eye conditions. With the likelihood higher for females they need to be extra vigilant with their eye care. But, why are […]

    Learn more
  • Eyes are a focus at Glastonbury Festival

    Eyes are a Focus at Glorious Glastonbury

    The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) is encouraging music lovers to make sure they take care of their eye health and remember to book eye tests by putting their vision to the test. RNIB is the official health charity partner for this year’s iconic Glastonbury Festival, here at Focus we fully support the […]

    Learn more
  • baby vision

    Baby vision: The development of sight from birth

    Baby vision! Have you ever looked at a baby and wondered what they are seeing, as they look around their new world with curiosity?  It turns out that babies ability to see is perhaps not as strong as you thought, with it taking up to two years for their vision to fully develop.  Just like […]

    Learn more
  • laser eye surgery recovery

    Laser eye surgery recovery: how long does it take?

    Laser eye surgery recovery: how long does it take? If you are thinking of undertaking laser eye surgery, planning your recovery and a suitable time to have the treatment will be very important. Most patients (about 97%) who come to Focus Clinic choose to have LASIK treatment. This laser eye surgery recovery is a fast treatment, […]

    Learn more
  • english views

    The Best of English Views

    Here at Focus Clinics, we have collaborated with photographers from all over England to put together a photographic journal that showcases the Best of English Views today; in focus. From Yorkshire to Essex, and Norfolk to Cornwall, we asked each of the photographers to contribute an image of the landscape from their county that they […]

    Learn more
  • Ocular Health: A Blind Spot in Parliament

    Ocular Health: A Blind Spot in Parliament

    At the end of March, the issue of eye health was discussed in parliament – for the first time in nearly seven years. Led by Wealden MP Nusrat Ghani, a parliamentary blind spot was addressed in a 90-minute debate in the House of Commons Chamber. Ms Ghani called for the government to develop and implement […]

    Learn more
  • short- and long-term effects of laser eye surgery

    What are the short- and long-term laser eye surgery effects?

    With any surgical procedure, including laser eye surgery, it’s important to address a number of principal issues and questions up front. Is it the right option for you personally? What exactly will the procedure involve? And – most importantly for many people – what can you expect the outcomes to be? What are the laser […]

    Learn more
  • Hay Fever

    Hay Fever: Preventing Itchy Eyes

    Spring days are nigh, and for many of us, with the increasing pollen count, Hay Fever is looming. The oncoming bouts of itchy eyes and a runny nose fill sufferers with dread, so what would be better than to prepare for, and possibly eliminate, these symptoms before pollen terrorises them for foreseeable sunny days? It […]

    Learn more
  • Toxins in medicine can save your life

    From poison to potions: the toxins used in medicine that could save your life…

    Worldwide, the prevalence of myopia has been rising dramatically, and it is estimated that 2.5 billion people will be affected by myopia by 2020, but a new study offers sufferers hope. News research reveals that atropine, a toxic substance derived from deadly nightshade, can be an effective and sustainable treatment for progressive high myopia in […]

    Learn more
  • using supplements to maintain eye health

    Using supplements to maintain eye health

    The eye is connected in more ways than one with the rest of the body. When a patient takes a form of medication or vitamin supplements for a systemic condition, ocular effects should be expected whether they are beneficial or risky to your eye health. Read the lists below for more natural approaches to maintaining […]

    Learn more
  • Warning Signs of Vision Loss in Children

    Warning Signs of Vision Loss in Children

    It’s Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month (August) and the World Health Organisation has found that 19 million children in the world are visually impaired. Of this amount, 12 million are visually impaired due to refractive errors which can be easily diagnosed and corrected through a routine eye examination. Do you know how to spot the warning […]

    Learn more
  • Eye-Inspired Architecture: The L’Hemisfèric

    Eye-Inspired Architecture: The L’Hemisfèric

    The L’Hemisfèric is a spectacular building located in Valencia, Spain. Designed by Santiago Calatrava and opened in 1998, this unique piece of architecture is a Planetarium for viewing the night sky and a Laserium to showcase light displays, it also houses an IMAX Cinema. What makes this building unique? It’s shaped like an eye and […]

    Learn more
  • brussels sprouts

    Brussels Sprouts: The Seasonal Superfood that will Save your Sight

    Your Christmas vegetables could be giving you more than you bargained for, as new research has found that the famously unpopular brussels sprouts could actually help save your sight. The tiny green vegetable has a bad reputation, but even if you’ve had a bad experience with them in the past, they’re worth giving another shot […]

    Learn more
  • lasik 360

    Laser eye surgery (LASIK) 360: The world’s first ever video

    Here at Focus Clinic we are proud to share the world’s first LASIK (‘laser-assisted in-situ keratomileusis’) eye surgery live video in 360 augmented reality. Performed by our very own Dr David Allamby, this footage is a great way for those thinking of getting laser eye surgery to get an idea of what to expect and […]

    Learn more
  • 15 foods that can improve your eye health

    15 Foods That Can Improve Your Eye Health

    Did you know eating certain foods can actually improve your eyesight, slow down aging of your eyes and keep your eyes in good health?

    Learn more
  • Why uncontrolled diabetes can lead to serious eye problems

    Why uncontrolled diabetes can lead to serious eye problems

    Did you know nearly one person in every 25 in the UK has diabetes? It can take time to get your diabetes under control, but the results are worth it – otherwise you could set yourself up for a host of complications. Diabetes can take a toll on nearly every organ in your body, and […]

    Learn more
  • 1920--1200

    What happens if I blink during laser eye surgery?

    The idea of having laser surgery can be a frightening thought. One of the most common concerns that we hear is whether you will be able to keep your eyes open for long enough, and then what happens if you blink? We would like to take this time to give you some reassurance. We all […]

    Learn more
  • shutterstock_496226125

    Keep Your Eyes Open to Spot the Symptoms of Cataracts

    Cataracts are the world’s leading cause of blindness. Estimates suggest that around half of people aged 75-85 have experienced some vision loss due to cataracts. Primarily a condition that affects the older generation, it can come on as early as your 40s. Rare cases of cataracts have also been seen in young children and even […]

    Learn more
  • firework night

    Remember remember the 5th November, and to protect your eyesight of course

    Now Halloween is out the way, we look to the coming weekend to celebrate Guy Fawkes night, commonly known as bonfire or firework night. With shops stocked up full of firecrackers and fountains, it’s easy to forget about the precautions we need to take to protect our vision. Fireworks are a spectacular show, and whilst […]

    Learn more
  • children’s eye health and safety awareness Month – Education and the digital age

    Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month – Education and The Digital Age

    As children across the UK skipped out of their school gates and into the glorious prospect of 6 weeks of fun and play, we guess that the state of their eye health was the last thing on their minds. But, as August kicked off this week so did Children’s Eye Health and Safety Awareness Month. […]

    Learn more
  • Glaucoma is a leading cause of blindness

    Glaucoma: A Leading Cause of Blindness

    Glaucoma is one of the leading causes of blindness throughout the world, especially in older people, with estimates of suspected cases at over 60 million worldwide. What is glaucoma? Glaucoma is an eye condition where the optic nerve, which connects your eye to your brain, becomes damaged, usually as a result of an increased pressure […]

    Learn more
  • dark chocolate vision

    Need an excuse to eat chocolate? It’s good for your eyes

    With the Easter weekend only just over, there might be a few of us that are feeling a little guilty about the amount of chocolate we have eaten. But did you know that dark chocolate is actually good for our vision and can protect us from a number of diseases in our eyes? You probably […]

    Learn more
  • prescription

    Prescription Drugs: What ones are damaging your eyes?

    What prescription drugs could be harming our vision? For many years there has been speculation over the side effects of major drugs around the world. Whilst adverse reactions to medical prescription are rare, they can and do appear for some of us, especially when drugs are taken for extended periods of time. The below common […]

    Learn more
  • myopia epidemic

    The Myopia Epidemic Across The World: Which countries suffer the most and least?

    Over 80 million children are affected by the myopia epidemic and the economic cost is estimated at an annual $268 billion worldwide. What is myopia? Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is a refractive error in your eye.  This means that the eye does not refract light properly to a single focus, which enabled you to […]

    Learn more
  • Child with colourful eye patch

    5 Top Eye Patching Tips for Parents

    As part of children’s eye health and safety month, we want to provide some helpful tips for parents about patching their child’s eye for certain eye conditions.

    Learn more
  • Sunlight and Your Eyes

    Sunlight and Your Eyes

    We often take our eyes for granted. They are an essential part of our overall health and one of the most important out of all of our senses. We are often told to avoid sunlight to protect our eyesight, but why should we listen to this advice? Sunlight and myopia: Myopia is the official name […]

    Learn more
Get in touch
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Thank you for getting in touch with Focus. Your message is on its way and one of our friendly team will be in touch shortly!
Reviews

Matt

14th May

matt

‘Years of being unable to see the wall are over!’

close
close
big close

Book a free* consultation

There is a refundable admin fee of £25 for consultations during the week and £50 for consultations in the weekend. This will be returned to you when you attend the appointment.
Thank you for getting in touch with Focus. Your message is on its way and one of our friendly team will be in touch shortly!

Would you rather speak to someone?

*Opening Times:
Monday - Friday: 9am – 6pm Saturday: 9am – 3pm

Would you rather speak to someone?

Call: 0207 307 8250

to arrange your free* consultation
There is a refundable admin fee of £25 for consultations during the week and £50 for consultations in the weekend. This will be returned to you when you attend the appointment.
Mr Samer Hamada
laser and lens eye surgery specialist
 Samar Hamada