Specsavers in Wantage is reminding parents of the importance of regular eye examinations for their children in support of the  ‘Age eight is too late’ national campaign.
 
The campaign is trying to raise awareness of how children’s eyes develop until the age of eight and that many common eye conditions are more easily resolvable if detected before that age.
 
An independent report* revealed that a quarter of parents surveyed with a child aged three to 12 are yet to have had their child’s vision tested.  
 
Store director and optometrist Anchal Rana says: ‘I would highly recommend all children have a free eye test before the age of seven. Our professional and friendly optometrists carry out a number of visual tests in a friendly environment and ensure that we make children feel at ease.  
 
‘You'd be surprised how many tests we can carry out on young children - we can check for range of issues including short or long sightedness and colour vision defects.
 
We can even let you know if your child’s vision is developing as it should be for their age group.  
 
They do not have to be able to read as we have a number of other techniques using colours and shapes to test sight.
 
Free eye tests for children
The NHS offers free annual checks for all under 16's so there’s really no reason not to book in.’
 
Regular eye examinations are vital, as undetected vision problems affect a child’s learning and can often be mistaken for learning difficulties in young children. Around 80% of everything a child learns is through their vision, so even a minor problem with a child’s sight can mean they suffer huge setbacks in their development at school.
 
A child’s eyesight will continue to develop right up to the age of eight years old, which means that eyecare issues can be corrected by the optician. Amblyopia or lazy eye is a common condition and realistically needs to be picked up by the age of five to be treated.  The earlier many common childhood vision problems are discovered the better the chance of correcting them. 
 
An eye examination takes just 20 minutes – parents can expect a professional, friendly and fun service that could make a huge difference to your child’s life.
 
The children’s range of glasses includes the popular The Gruffalo, which feature favourite characters from Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s beloved children’s picture books, including the Witch and Cat, Dragon and The Gruffalo’s Child. The selection of six styles for boys and girls are priced at £64 or are free with an NHS voucher.  
 
They are also included in the Kids Two Free Pairs promotion which enables children up to the age of 16 qualify for one pair of specs free from the NHS and a second pair from Specsavers free of charge, including prescription sunglasses. 
 
 
*commissioned by Specsavers