Not enough youngsters having eye tests

MORE than three quarters of parents in Ipswich are neglecting their children's eyesight, according to a new survey .The report, which canvassed the views of more than 1,100 people across the UK, shows that 78 per cent of parents in Ipswich with children under the age of nine have never and do not plan to take their child in for an eye examination.

MORE than three quarters of parents in Ipswich are neglecting their children's eyesight, according to a new survey .

The report, which canvassed the views of more than 1,100 people across the UK, shows that 78 per cent of parents in Ipswich with children under the age of nine have never and do not plan to take their child in for an eye examination.

And it seems that fear of cost is a major barrier as 31pc of those surveyed believed that they would have to pay for an eye test for their child, despite the fact such tests are free on the NHS.

The results show an alarming lack of awareness among parents about the nature or importance of their child's eye care.


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Iain Anderson, chairman of the Eyecare Trust, a registered charity, is concerned.

He said: "Undetected vision problems in children are one of the major causes for learning difficulties.

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"Poor eyesight is not always obvious to parents or teachers and can severely restrict a child's ability to learn, read, write and spell."

Optometrist Mary Perkins, the founder of Specsavers who commissioned the study, also believes such results are a major cause for concern.

She said: "A child's eyesight is usually fully developed by the age of eight.

"It is crucial that eye tests are carried out at least once a year from the age of three. The only investment parents have to make is time."

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