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How to choose the right glasses for your child

By Essilor Canada

Back-to-school is here and there are so many things to think about. School materials, new clothes, lunches to organize, routines to integrate ... wherever you turn, there is something that needs to be done. Don't panic, take a breath and remember that everything will be fine. One step at a time! Now, when you look at that to-do list, have you reached the line that says: "Glasses for the little one"? Perfect! Here are a few things to consider when it comes to buying glasses for your child.

Before getting to the heart of the matter, did you know that 80% of a child's learning occurs through what they see? At the beginning of the school year, it is essential to provide them with glasses adapted to both their sight and their physiognomy.

Let's start with the frames. Choose a few options with the help of your eyecare professional. Make sure you know the size of the frame you need. This can seem difficult because your child is still growing! Two simple things to verify: the eyes must be centered within the frame and there can be no space between the nose and the frame. Should you choose plastic or metal frames? It's really a matter of preference.

Be sure to choose frames that compliment your child's appearance and downplay the thickness of your child's prescription. A higher prescription could result in thicker lenses. You can also ask your eyecare professional about thin lenses which are lighter and have a more aesthetic appearance.

Once you've selected several frame options, let your child choose from among the frames. A child who loves their glasses will wear them more readily and will be more easily convinced to put them on every morning. A tip: Find 'cool' characters from movies and books who wear glasses! Your child will quickly identify with the characters and will be more inclined to wear their own glasses. For young children, silicone sleeves placed on the arms of the frames will help the glasses to stay in place. They're also a great addition when playing outside or participating in more active sports.

What about the lenses? We recommend an impact-resistant polycarbonate option. It is also important to opt for a lens that protects the eyes from the harmful effects of blue light emitted by digital devices such as smart phones, tablets, computers and televisions. Children's eyes are more sensitive because their eyes let in six times more harmful rays than an adult's eye. In addition, children are more exposed to the sun and UV rays because they spend an average of 3 times more time outdoors. Remember to add a Crizal coating that will protect your child's eyes from UV rays. The treatment also protects against scratches as well as dirt and grime, making lenses much easier to clean!

Don't forget to talk to your eyecare professional about warranties available for replacing damaged or broken glasses — with the amount that your little one moves, damaged glasses are a distinct possibility!