Pediatric Vision Exams

Pediatric Vision Exams

Vision Exams for Children

Could visual problems be contributing to your child’s frustration with reading or learning?

  • Does your child struggle with reading?
  • Does your child do well at first and then begin to make “careless”/confusing errors?
  • Is it difficult for your child to remember or comprehend what they read?
  • Does your child experience recurrent problems with fatigue, headaches, or blurred vision while studying?
  • Does your child just not seem to work up to potential?
  • Does your child have poor handwriting skills or seem clumsy or uncoordinated?

The American Optometric Association recommends that pre-school children receive a complete vision exam at the ages of six months, three years and five years. It is particularly important that a child have a complete evaluation in the summer prior to entry into Kindergarten. While in school, yearly evaluations are recommended.

At Alderwood Vision Therapy Center we provide prescriptions for spectacles. We also provide recommendations for where to go for frames, contact lens fitting, dispensing and follow-up.


Testing for More than 20/20

20/20 simply means that a person can clearly see a letter a certain size at a 20 feet under high contrast. But there’s more to healthy vision and 20/20 and that’s the PLUS of our practice!

Our comprehensive vision exam goes beyond 20/20 to evaluate many important visual skills, such as:

  • Visual Acuity at Near

    Is vision clear and single at close distances? Clear sight at short distances is critical to reading, writing, close work, computer use, etc.

  • Eye Teaming Skills

    Do the two eyes aim, move, and work as a coordinated team? Weaknesses in binocular (two-eyed) vision and eye teaming skills can cause numerous difficulties, including convergence insufficiency and poor depth perception.

  • Eye Focusing Skills

    Do the eyes maintain clear vision at varying distances? Rapid, automatic eye focus adjustment is critical to learning, reading, writing, sports, etc. Deficiencies can cause visual fatigue, reduced reading speed and comprehension, and/or avoidance of close work or other activities.

  • Eye Movement Skills

    Do eye movements show adequate muscle control, tracking, fixation, etc.? In the classroom, normal eye movements allow rapid and accurate shifting of the eyes along a line of print or from book to desk to board, etc. In sports, efficient eye movements contribute to eye-hand coordination, visual reaction time, and accurate tracking.

  • Above are just a few of the many visual skills evaluated during our comprehensive vision exam. In addition, the health of your eyes, inside and out, is carefully evaluated for such problems as cataracts, glaucoma, hypertension, diabetes, macular degeneration, etc.

Do you treat or diagnose learning problems, disabilites, dyslexia?

We thoroughly evaluate the visual system as it often can affect one’s ability to learn. For example, these types of problems could cause difficulties in reading (losing place, skipping words, blurriness, headaches, fatigue, tired eyes, etc.), or writing (difficulty with coloring, staying on the line), or in sports. Even if the patient can see well, there may be other significant visual problems hindering one’s ability to learn. To thoroughly diagnose learning disabilities or dyslexia, a full neurological, psychological or educational battery of testing and consultation must be given.

Visual Information Processing (VIP) Testing

Visual Information Processing testing is comprised of a series of tests that are designed to identify strengths or weaknesses in the following areas:

  • visual motor integration
  • visual perception including:
    • visual memory
    • form perception
    • visual discrimination
    • directionality
    • laterality
    • auditory
    • visual integration
  • perceptual motor abilities
  • auditory analysis screening
  • motor screening

The Visagraph II Computerized Eye Movement Recording Test may be performed depending on reading ability. This instrument uses goggles with infrared optics to test reading efficiency number of fixations, regressions and other characteristics of eye movement during reading.

We also provide a developmental series of tests, known as the Wachs Cognitive Battery, for younger children and those with special needs to evaluate schemes of identification, processing and movement.

The time required for the VIP testing is usually 1½ hours and is done by our therapy staff on a one-one basis with the patient. Upon completion of this testing, scores will be tabulated and a written summary detailing the results will be sent to you. Recommendations will be included as to whether vision therapy might be helpful or if referral to another professional (such as tutor, psychologist, etc.) is appropriate.