Double vision is fairly common among children. It is estimated that about two children in every classroom have double vision. Double vision is also called eye teaming.
Like many other vision problems, signs of double vision become more prevalent after 3rd grade. Why? Small print. Many of the vision problems become worse as the print in reading materials gets smaller and moves closer together. Students do not often mention that they see double print, because they usually do not realize that not everyone sees this way.
Causes of Double Vision
The eyes are extremely complex. Eye teaming occurs when the eyes can focus on exactly the same point at the same time. Think about being “cross-eyed” – that students would obviously have vision problems, but it would also be obvious to the examiner. If a child’s eyes move apart tiny bit, that would cause double vision and not be noticeable without an in-depth exam.
Signs of Double Vision
1. Does your child cover or close one eye when she tries to read?
2. Does you child rest his face in his hand – and cover an eye with his palm?
3. Does you child miss chunks of words when she reads?
4. Does your child turn the book or his head to the side when he reads?
5. Your child repeats letters in words when she shouldn’t. For example, spelling far “faar”.
6. He misses math problems with columns, because the columns do not “line up.”
If you want to ask your child if she sees double, the book, When Your Child Struggles, Dr. David Cook recommends asking your child is the words ever “pull apart or run together.” That makes more sense to children than double vision.
Where Can Teachers Get Information
Teachers can get information for free from the Optometric Extension Program Foundation, Inc. They have a pamphlet called the Educator’s Guide to Classroom Vision Problems.