*Wondering how you can take care of your vision and help a child in need of vision care? One in four children has an undiagnosed vision problem. Right now, when you purchase an individual vision insurance plan from VSP Direct for as low as $17 a month, a child in need receives a free eye exam and glasses, up to a retail value of $1 million. Find out more at VSPDirect.com/EyeGiveBack. Thanks to VSP for sponsoring this post!*
As a parent, vision is extremely important to me. My Dad is blind in one eye from a baseball injury that he sustained as a child and throughout my own childhood, I had to watch him and the struggles he faced as a result of that injury. Holding down a job was extremely difficult for him, especially when the job required vision from both sides like assembly work in a factory. It made a job like that nearly impossible because my Dad could not see things coming down the line without completely turning his head. When I became an adult and had children of my own, vision care became my number one priority because of the struggles I had to watch my Dad face. Luckily, my dad is able wear glasses to help protect his eye that still has vision and he has never let being blind in one eye stop him from living a fulfilling life.
When our first child was in kindergarten, a letter came home from school saying that he had failed his vision screening. I was shocked and thought they must be wrong because he was too young to already be facing vision issues but sure enough, a follow up visit with our family eye doctor showed that he did, in fact, need his vision corrected. By the 3rd grade, he was diagnosed with an astigmatism and he was completely reliant on his eyeglasses to function.
Without his glasses, he couldn't do simple things like read the chalkboard in class. I feel extremely blessed that we had vision insurance and we were able to catch his eye problem early so that he could enjoy his childhood just like all of the other kids his age.
Now at age 13, he is extremely active in sports and he doesn't miss out on anything because of his vision. There is nothing I enjoy more than watching my own kids participate in sports and other activities and it makes me feel good knowing that they aren't limited to what they can do because of something that is so easily corrected like their vision. Our son lives a completely normal life just like every other kid his age, excelling in both sports and academics.
We could not be more proud of him and we recognize that he would not be able to accomplish all of these things if he was struggling to see.
Every year he and my husband look forward to Opening Day for the Cincinnati Reds and I am so glad they get to make those memories together.
Unfortunately, seeing how blessed we have been, I recognize that not everyone has been that lucky. There are kids going to school every single day and they are struggling academically because of issues with their vision. Corrective lenses can be expensive and when a family doesn't have vision insurance, vision issues often take a backseat to other necessities. According to VSP, 1 in 4 children has an undetected vision problem. Because of this, 20% struggle to read. Early eye exams could catch visual problems and often even correct them if caught in time but 76% of kids are not receiving the recommended number of exams before the age of 5. This is why VSP has launched #EyeGiveBack
From now until June 30, 2015, when a VSP Direct individual vision insurance plan is purchased through VSPDirect.com/EyeGiveBack, VSP will donate an eye exam and glasses to a child in need up to $1 million.
We urge our readers to join #EyeGiveBack today! It is so much more than vision insurance. It is helping children across our country access vision insurance to help them see the world as beautifully as possible and to help them reach their potential.