Getting the glasses to stay on
Many Eye specialist doctors will tell you that once your child realizes that they see better with their glasses, they’ll be much more likely to leave them on, and even ask for them first thing in the morning. And that’s true, but the trick is getting through that initial stage when they don’t want these funny things sitting on their face.
Every child is different, some will take to their glasses immediately, while others fight tooth and nail for months. A recent poll shows that about 65% children were wearing them well in a week or less, but more than 15% of the kids take longer than a month before they’ll wear them reliably. Odds are your child will surprise you and take to their glasses quickly, but if they don’t, know that you’r not alone in your struggles.
While there are a lot of strategies to get your child to leave their glasses on, the key seems to be to stay calm and positive (which is easier said than done) and consistent about keeping them on (ok, this is also easier said than done). When your child takes them off, put them back on with a smile, but don’t make a big deal about it. If they are really fighting or upset, set the glasses to the side for a few minutes until your child calms down and try again. You’ll also want to have activities on hand when you put those glasses on. Boredom and glasses do not mix!
The following strategies have been suggested by parents of our kid patients who needed to wear glasses. They may help you in your struggle to make your children keep on their glasses too.
- Talk about how nice he or she looks in the glasses.
- When putting glasses on your child, do it with a smile. “While we were trying glasses on Palak, she was crying and we were getting upset, too, and we kept apologizing to her. Dr. Kumar recommended that instead, we show her how happy we are when we put glasses on her (even when we aren’t). It didn’t completely stop her crying, but she definitely calmed down a notch once we started acting happier” says Mrs. Shah, the mother of a 7 year cheerful girl residing in Kharghar.
- Show them glasses-wearing characters (like Arthur, or Harry Potter for older kids). This helps them accept the glasses by making them less self-conscious.
- If your child keeps taking off their glasses, simply put them back on with a smile. If they don’t let you put them on, don’t make a big deal, simply set them aside and try again in a few minutes. “It took about 2 weeks for Zeeshan to get to a point where he leaves the glasses on most of the time” says Mrs. Chaudhary, a resident of Nerul, Navi Mumbai.
- Most kids, especially teenagers are conscious about their looks particularly in front of their school mates. Hence it may be a good idea to speak to the class teachers and close friends and ask them to appreciate the child’s new look.
- When she put on her pair of glasses, I rewarded her with her favorite cookies and explained that each times she wears her glasses we’ll show her how proud we are by giving her a cookie. She seems motivated by this and put them on 4 more times before dinner.
- Take off your child’s glasses when they’re in the car – at least at the beginning. It’s likely they’ll take off their glasses and throw them somewhere where they might fall out of the car or get smushed when you open the door.
- Mrs. Tawade of New Panvel thinks the reward system works best for most kids. She says “We bribed him with a new Thomas toy if he would put them on and leave them alone, so he did, and Daddy let him pick out the most expensive Thomas set that the store had.”
We wish you the best in your efforts to make your child keep their glasses on. If you have any strategy that has worked for you, kindly share it with us for the benefit of other parents.