Does your child keep asking you, “Can I wear contact lenses instead of my glasses?’’ and you’re not sure what to answer? He's old enough to care about his appearance, but is he still too young to take on the responsibilities that come with wearing contact lenses? Many worried parents ask about this.
There is no “ideal’’ age at which a child can start wearing contact lenses, it really depends on his level of maturity and on his ability to put on the contact lenses in and maintain them on his own. As the parent, you are the most informed person to make this decision since you know your child, his personality and his everyday habits. Here are some telltale signs that your child is ready for contact lenses:
-Your child is responsible
He does all his assigned chores without complaining, he cleans the guinea pig’s cage regularly and he always comes home at the expected time. If your child demonstrates that he is capable of being autonomous and responsible, he would probably be a good candidate to start wearing contact lenses.
-He’s getting better and better with hygiene
If you notice that your child is starting to be more aware of the importance of hygiene, it’s a good sign! For example, he washes his hands without you having to ask him, he regularly takes showers on his own and does not fail to brush his teeth before going to bed. If he is able to show you that he knows how to take care of his corporal hygiene, this may be a sign that he is ready to properly maintain his contacts.
-He takes great care of his glasses
Although he does not like to wear them anymore, he understands that they are costly and he takes care of them as best as he can. He carries them in their case, he avoids leaving them in places where they could be damaged and he cleans them from time to time.
-Your child is telling you he would like to wear contact lenses
The key to success to transition to contact lenses, is your child’s motivation. The request must come from him. A child who is motivated to switch from glasses to contact lenses is more likely to have a successful transition.
Daily use contact lenses are generally a good option for children since their maintenance is simpler: at the end of the day, they simply throw them away. The risk of developing corneal ulcers and conjunctivitis is reduced. It would be logical to think that children are the most at risk of developing eye diseases as a result of poorly maintaining their contact lenses but in fact, the majority of patients walking in our stores with these cases, are adults. Why? This is probably because children who are given the privilege of wearing contact lenses feel lucky and try to maintain their precious lenses. After all, their contacts are the only way they can avoid wearing glasses!
If you notice that your child is hiding his glasses or if he is not wearing them, it is essential to find a solution quickly because vision is critical in the learning process of a child. Contact lenses can be an excellent solution for a child who does not want to wear his glasses anymore.
Visit us at an IRIS store near you so that an optician can explain to your child how to put  in the lenses and to give him recommendations for their maintenance. Our team can teach your child what contact lenses are and will help them with this transition to a more grown-up look!