WE hope you’re enjoying the long, hot summer and that the kids are having lots of fun on the beach, by the pool and at home.

This time of year there are lots of hazards for the eyes from the sun, to the sand and chlorine, so in this column, we wanted to answer two important questions which parents often ask us.

  1. How can I teach my child to look after his eyes?
    A. This is always a worry and you need to educate them so they can make the right choices even when you’re not there. Here are seven things to teach them –  
    1. Never poke things into your eyes, not even fingers.
    2. Never play with strong chemicals, like washing-up liquid, washing powder or bleach. Getting these in your eyes can be very dangerous.
    3. Never throw sand or dirt in anyone’s face.
    4. Never look straight at the sun – not even through dark glasses. The bright light from the sun can burn your retina.
    5. If an optician suggests you need to wear glasses – wear them!
    6. Always wear sunglasses which block out the sun’s harmful rays in bright sunshine.
    7. Always wear safety glasses when you handle harmful substances.

    Q. How can I tell if my child is struggling to see?
    A. Look out for signs such as sitting too close to the TV, rubbing their eyes, being clumsy, or complaining of headaches and take them for a test right away. Also, take them to the optician for a full eye test every year from the age of three, they don’t need to be able to read to have one.
    Eye tests are free at Specsavers Opticas in Marbella and Fuengirola for all children under 16 years and we recommend getting your children’s eyes tested before they return to school. Visit www.specsavers.es for more advice and information about eye care, to find your nearest store and book a back to school eye test.

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