Optical Express data highlights the importance of children's eye tests

Multiple’s data shows that mean age for diagnosing visual conditions in children in the UK is six years old

Exterior of an Optical Express practice

Data analysed by a High Street multiple shows that the mean age for diagnosing conditions such as lazy eye and colour deficiency in children is six years old.

Reporting its finding, Optical Express highlighted that undiagnosed sight problems could therefore “seriously affect” learning during a child’s first years at school and encouraged parents to have their children’s sight tested regularly and from a young age.

The data used by Optical Express for the analysis included patient information spanning eight years from those who had been diagnosed with amblyopia at the multiple. The results also showed a variation in the mean age for children living in different parts of the UK. While the mean age was lowest in Ireland at 5.9 years, in was highest in England at six-and-a-half years.

Commenting on the impact of undiagnosed sight issues on learning, a primary school teacher from Harrogate, Josie Jones, said: “Based on my experience, one of the main challenges in teaching young children is keeping them fully engaged in learning material. This is made even harder when a child is suffering from an undiagnosed sight problem.”

“Some of the key indicators of vision issues I’ve noticed include children squinting to read the board at the front of the classroom, complaining of headaches, and lack of concentration and fear when it comes to reading.”