Kids are incredibly adaptable and readily embrace new things. For that first pair of glasses, you’ll want to make the transition period easier and make sure your child wears their glasses properly as per the recommendations of your eye care professional. Dr. Valerie Bardier, optometrist and co-owner of the Opto-Réseau clinics in Sorel-Tracy and Contrecœur, explains what you can do now to help get your child ready.
Your attitude matters
- It all starts with the attitude parents have towards glasses. Do you have any negative feelings or impressions? Any concerns? Talk to your optometrist, but not in front of your child.
- Be sure to show your child how glasses are a good thing: they let you do the things you enjoy comfortably, like watching favourite characters on TV, reading comic books, or even doing homework (never hurts to try!)
- Treat glasses and trips to the optometrist as something exciting. You can show your child pictures of their heroes or favourite characters who wear glasses. A few examples: Harry Potter, Minions, Clark Kent (Superman), Velma (Scooby-Doo), Simon (Alvin and the Chipmunks), Peter Parker (Spider-Man), SpongeBob SquarePants, John (Peter Pan), Carl (Up!), and Cyclops (X-Men).
- If your child complains about headaches or poor vision, take the opportunity to remind them that their new glasses will fix all that.
- If you wear glasses, share your own experience to show your child that wearing glasses can be fun. Kids love acting like grown-ups!
- Let your child help pick their frames. Like clothes, choosing frames is a chance for your child to express themselves and decide how they want to look. A frame that doesn’t jive with their personality could end up on the shelf or make wearing glasses a chore. Know also that frames for kids don’t always have to be expensive to look good.
- Work with your eye care professional to choose frames that sit comfortably on your child’s ears and nose. When the glasses are ready, your eye care professional will also check to ensure your child’s visual comfort.
- Here’s a great idea for family craft time: decorate a glasses case! Let your child personalize their case—with stickers, for example—to help make it their own.
- Try the following with your child: ask them to look at an image with and without their glasses and then ask them how the two are different. You can do this during a movie or on a family outing, for example. Help your child understand that their glasses can make their favourite activities easier and more comfortable.
- To make sure your child looks after their glasses, show them how and do it with them at first to help build their confidence.
- If your child still doesn’t want to wear their glasses, start by asking questions. Do the glasses hurt their nose or ears? Can they see properly? Are the glasses clean? Does your child feel shy about wearing them? Did a friend say something about them? Try to find out what the real issue is so you can address it.
Have questions? Want to talk to one of our specialists so you can select the best option for your child? Find the nearest clinic and come see us!