Many of us remember visiting the school nurse for an annual vision screening as children. As we grow into adulthood, this important appointment is often overlooked. Far too often, adults wait until they experience vision problems before they schedule a screening. By missing annual vision screenings, vision problems cannot be detected early and treated.
With the use a special camera, vision screenings are intended to assess vision issues and help identify problems that can lead to poor vision. Vision screenings are not as comprehensive as eye exams. Eye exams are more comprehensive and include tests for conditions such as color blindness, glaucoma and depth perception.
As the population in the United States ages, the number people who are blind or visually impaired is estimated to double by 2030 and triple by 2050. Vision screenings are a critical part of one’s overall health and can significantly improve the quality of life for millions of Americans.
For children, vision screenings are essential to help ensure their development. Young children cannot identify and communicate challenges with their vision. If left untreated, vision disorders can interfere with a child’s academic and social progression. In some cases, untreated vision disorders can lead to permanent vision loss.
For individuals and families living in Bradford, Centre, Clinton, Lycoming, Sullivan, and Tioga counties, North Central Sight Services, Inc., provides quick, easy and effective preventive vision screenings to detect vision loss and potential eye diseases. The organization uses the Spot™ Vision Screener, a handheld device that scans both eyes at the same time from a comfortable three feet away. It can detect potential vision issues across all age groups, starting at six-months old. Individuals who do not pass the screenings are referred to local eye care professionals.
For income-eligible children, North Central Site Services, Inc., provides opportunities for eye exams through its Functional Vision Clinic, which is held monthly at the organization’s facility in Williamsport. A pediatric optometrist specializing in visual-related learning problems conducts the exams. Common signs of a functional vision issue include poor eye-hand coordination, alternate uses of the right and left hands, and difficulty when studying visual information.
For more than 65 years, North Central Sight Services, Inc. has assisted individuals who are blind or visually impaired to live independently and maximize their quality of life. The organization helps prevent vision loss through education programs and screenings for children and adults. North Central Sight Services, Inc., offers adjustment services for people losing their vision, support services, employment opportunities for people who are blind or visually impaired, and a prevention of blindness program.
For more information on vision screenings and related services, contact North Central Sight Services at (570) 323-9401.