Teaching is a vision-intensive occupation. A teacher is expected to see what is going on in the classroom both near and far, decipher student’s handwriting and images in going over homework, and connect with students by making regular and confident eye contact. Regular eye exams for teachers are important.
Myopia is also known as near-sightedness. It limits the vision to things that are close up. People who have suffered from myopia since childhood are more likely to develop eye conditions that threaten the sight later in life.
Potential conditions include:
- Retinal detachment
Teachers need long-distance vision to spot things going on in the back of the classroom. As a general rule, teachers are practically required to have eyes in the back of their heads. It is important to keep the actual eyes healthy and keenly observant.
Hyperopia or hypermetropia refers to far-sightedness. Objects close up are blurry, but objects farther away are clear. Teachers need to be able to focus on things both near and far. The whiteboard close at hand, the data included in lesson plans, and the homework being graded are all things that a teacher needs to clearly see.
Common symptoms of far-sightedness as a person ages are eye strain and headaches. Sometimes the person with blurry objects nearby find their eyes to be dry and achy or red from strain. A common sign is holding reading material at arm’s length to see it clearly enough to read.
Eye exams for teachers are also important for early warning of the signs of glaucoma. Glaucoma is the result of the optic nerve’s intrinsic deterioration; this leads to the front of the eye being placed under the high pressure of a fluid. This fluid is aqueous humor.
Aqueous humor normally flows out from the eye through a channel that is like mesh. If this channel becomes blocked, there is a build-up of liquid. While the reason for this blockage is not yet known, doctors have found that it can be passed from parents to children.
Often, there are few to no early signs of glaucoma short of the results of an eye exam. Many people fail to get help until the damage done by glaucoma is already permanent. An eye doctor needs to be seen regularly to avoid long-term visual loss.
Stress and Vision
Teaching is a stressful job, and this includes putting stress on the body and eyes. The body can feel well enough, but the eyes exhibit signs of a stressful life. Some temporary eye conditions caused by stress are:
- Blurred vision
- Light sensitivity
- Eye spasms and twitching
- Dry eyes
Recognizing Symptoms in Students
One reason eye health is important in teachers is to help recognize the signs of symptoms in students. Catching vision problems in students early is important to their health and school careers. Students can get frustrated and inattentive when they cannot see clearly to participate.
Some symptoms of eye problems in students include:
- Eyes turning outward or inward
- Losing their places while reading
- Rubbing the eyes
- Tilting or turning the head to use a single eye alone
- Worsening academic performance
Education has a vital role in the machinery of society. Teachers need to have healthy eyes to carry out their important part of this role. Eye exams for teachers will help them to carry out their work at peak performance.