There’s a video getting a lot of attention of a baby getting glasses for the first time. In the off-chance you haven’t seen it (it’s got over 30,000,000 views), take a look. It’s a wonderful and sweet video! According to her parents in this article, the baby, Piper, has glasses due to extreme farsightedness.
I love videos like this that show a baby or young child getting glasses and then reacting to being able to see. That video has been the subject of a whole lot of articles and news stories now, but I wanted to add some of my own thoughts.
What a great response to some of those questions we get so often about babies in glasses
Does a baby really even need glasses? It’s not like they have to drive or read a black board.
Take a look at that smile as she discovers even more of the world around her. So much of our learning is visual, and that includes all of the learning that happens early in life before a child can read.
How on earth can you keep glasses on a baby?
Well, it’s not so hard to keep their glasses on when the glasses help them see. (Not to say that it’s always smooth sailing all the time. Baby Piper’s parents mention in an interview with ABC News that she takes them off some times to chew on them still. That’s something I know a lot of us who have been through this can totally relate to.)
Not all babies who need glasses have that same reaction
These videos are wonderful to watch, and I could watch them over and over again, but I worry that they can set up unrealistic expectations, as not every child responds the same way to their first time in glasses. If your child doesn’t immediately love their glasses, know that you’re not alone! Prescriptions can take time to get used to as does having new equipment sitting on your face. If you’re having trouble introducing your child to glasses, take a look at some of our tips.
Vision issues in very young children are not all that rare. Have your child’s vision checked!
What I really wish was emphasized in the stories about this video is how important it is to have your child’s vision checked. Most people don’t realize how many kids should be in glasses based on prescribing guidelines. One study of 533 children under the age of 2 found that 1-2% of the children met the prescribing guidelines for glasses (read the study here, table 7 has the percentages of children who should have glasses).
InfantSEE is a fantastic program in the US that provides free infant eye exams to babies 6-12 months old. Also, while pediatricians and schools often do vision screenings throughout childhood, those screenings can sometimes miss vision problems. If you ever suspect your child might have vision problems, please get them in to see an eye doctor who specializes in young children.
And finally, if you just want to watch a few more videos like the one above, check out our collection!
I’m so glad you warned me that not all babies have happy, excited reactions when getting glasses. My 6.5 month old son (now 8 months) didn’t react at all. He was stone faced, in fact! Aside from reaching out to grab something for the first time, I couldn’t tell that he realized he had glasses on at all. Thanks for the warning!
Oh you’re welcome! Zoe looked around wide-eyed at first, but as soon as we got home, she threw her glasses off as soon as we’d put them on. It did get better, eventually.