The first pair of eyeglasses is a big deal for anyone at any age! But getting the first pair of eyeglasses for a child can feel like a real challenge! Often, the selection of frames within an optical store can be huge! Having no shortage of selection in children’s eyeglass frames can make the process of selecting a frame confusing and overwhelming. You want the best for your kid, so how do you know what frame will be appropriate and best suited for them!? Here are some tips to help you out!
Selecting Children’s Eyeglass Frames
Your first step in selecting appropriate children’s eyeglass frames is understanding your child’s vision requirements and eyeglass prescription. Most eyeglasses are prescribed to correct either farsightedness (needs glasses for close work) or nearsightedness (needs glasses to see at a distance). The amount of prescription required determines how the lens looks as well as lens thickness. A recommendation by the optometrist will be made as to if the glasses are to be worn full or part-time.
Knowing how much your child needs to wear their eyewear, as well as knowing what activities they need them for may help you and your optician in selecting a suitable pair of eyeglasses.
A way to make frame selection easier is to enlist the help of an optician while selecting your child’s new frame. Opticians are a great judge in frame selection. An optician determines how a frame fits both the patient and their prescription.
Your Child’s Prescription And Selecting Children’s Eyeglass Frames
Understanding your child’s eyeglass prescription is of most importance. The prescription dictates the type of children’s eyeglass frame needed to fit the lens. As a prescription gets stronger an eyeglass lens gets thicker and heavier. If your child has a stronger prescription, it is especially important to keep the frame small to help reduce lens thickness and weight. By reducing thickness and weight, the glasses not only become more cosmetically appealing but because of the reduction in weight, they become lighter as well!
Understanding Your Child’s Taste In Frames
Many children are just like adults when it comes to knowing what they want! Just like adults, they have likes and dislikes. They are little people, and therefore can have strong little people opinions! Although it is important to have a say in your child’s appearance, it is also good to approach frame selection with an open mind as to what your child likes and dislikes!
For most children, it’s important to be accepted by their peers. When wearing glasses (especially for the first time) a child may be concerned that they may be teased. This is why it is very important to both select a frame that your child feels comfortable in while keeping the frame looking “cool”. It is your job to give your child your opinion and help them in selecting frames that work with their personality while helping steer your child away from children’s eyewear that may look questionable, and may not fit them or the family budget. If your child is unhappy with the frame selection, you may have a hard time having them comply with wearing their new glasses.
Selecting A Proper Fitting Children’s Eyeglass Frames
After frame material and style are determined, the next step is selecting children’s eyeglass frames that fits. There are a couple of different aspects to consider when evaluating how well a frame fits.
The Frame Bridge
Frames for children are designed with the aspects of a child’s feature in mind. Children usually have smaller, flatter nose bridges than adults. How a frame fits on the bridge of the nose is important because it can alter where the lens sits in front of the eyes and affect how well the glasses stay in place. An improper fit on the bridge can cause the glasses to sit too low or too high, causing your child to look over or under the lenses rather than through them! An improperly fit nose bridge can also cause the eyeglasses to slide down on the nose. This can make wearing the eyeglasses uncomfortable.
Selecting a frame that is not too small and not too big is also important as it will affect the eyeglass lens. An easy way to assess this is by determining where your child’s eyes sit within the frame. If your child’s eyes are closer to the outside edge of the frame, the frame is probably too small. If they sit closer to the bridge of the frame, the frame is probably too big. Typical you want the eyes to be almost centre within the edges of the frame.
Temple length is another important part to consider during frame selection. Again, children’s eyeglass frames usually have temples that are a specific length for children. If a temple is too short, the glasses may slide down on the face. Too long and the temples will bend down much lower than the bottom of the ear.
Material Selection For Children’s Eyeglass Frames
Material selection is important because it determines how well your children’s eyeglass frames will stand up to wear and tear. Eyeglass frames are normally made of plastic or metal, or a combination of both. Plastic frames are often considered to be a better selection for children. Plastic frames are generally more durable and will need less adjusting compared to metal frames. A plastic frame usually makes a bolder statement than metal frames. They are also usually more colourful as well. Metal frames may also be considered because they are lighter in weight than thicker plastic frames. They also are thinner, therefore have more of a minimalist appearance. Metal frames are also more easily adjusted to get more of a custom fit than plastic frames.
Hopefully, these tips help the next time you have to select children’s eyeglass frames!
Our office has a great selection of children’s eyeglass frames. Our opticians are always happy to help make the process of frame selection easy on everyone!
Article written by: Trina Vanaalst, Licensed Optican and Contact Lens Practitioner