Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Do You See What I See?

We recently discovered, with the help of our son's teacher, that he needs glasses. We survived the ophthalmologist appointment and will pick up the new specs in a few days. When the nurse walked me over to the wall of glasses and asked me what kind we would like, I asked for, "Whatever is the most indestructible." She showed me ones that you can literally bend in half and they won't break, thank goodness.

Any tips from moms out there about glasses-wearing for young boys (Dash is a VERY hyperactive 4 year old who has sensory integration issues and often has very violent outbursts with flailing limbs). I read somewhere online that two good rules are:

Always take glasses off with both hands.

Always hand glasses to Mommy or Daddy.

After commenting on Red's Olympic unit post, I realize that I will probably have to add various rules about not using glasses as weapons, lock picks etc.

I decided against getting a bunch of library books about getting glasses, wearing glasses, etc., because, with Dash, I think our best bet is to downplay. I'm more worried about how to keep them in one piece!


Right Said Red said...

I like the anti-weapon emphasis ;-)

I don't have any advice but I do want to know which child Mr. Incredible is holding? Is that Dash as a baby?

texas mommy said...

It's Jack-Jack as a baby (sniff!) They are Elvis glasses and he is signing, as all our boys do, Touchdown Cowboys!

Stefan said...

You may be interested to check out the Free Sound Therapy Home Programme available from Sensory Activation Solutions. Their Auditory Activation Method builds on the pioneering work of Dr. Alfred Tomatis (Tomatis method) and Dr. Guy BĂ©rard (Auditory Integration Training) and has been specifically developed with the aim to improve sensory processing, interhemispheric integration and cognitive functioning. It has helped many children and adults with a wide range of learning and developmental difficulties, ranging from dyslexia, dyspraxia and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder to sensory processing disorders and autism. It is not a cure or medical intervention, but a structured training programme that can help alleviate some of the debilitating effects that these conditions can have on speech and physical ability, daily behaviour, emotional well-being and educational or work performance.

There is no catch, it's absolutely free and most importantly often effective. Check it out at:

Elena said...

Our oldest started wearing glasses at around the same age as Dash. We have gone through three pairs but only because we didn't start with the flexi glasses which you are starting with. I found the "take off glasses with two hands rule" indispensable. Also, we drilled it into his head that if he took them off when at school he had to put them in his case as he lost his second pair on the first day of school! We also had problems with him chewing the arms of his glasses and, believe it or not, the nose pieces (they are quite chewy!). Good luck and just be thankful that they probably come with a warranty:)

Erin said...

My son (18 mo) was just put in glasses after an extensive search to find out what was going on with him. Here is a link to our story (with some cute pics of our baby in indestructable glasses):

We have had a lot of luck with keeping his glasses on. The improvement in his eyesight as soon as he put them on was so dramatic, that I think he just likes wearing them. however, the first few days we really emphasized that Dad wears glasses (I have worn my sunglasses around the house for a few days to show that mom wears glasses too)and we always notice who else wears glasses througout the day. The other day I accidentally left my sunglasses on top of my head and before I knew it Sean was eating dinner with his glasses propped on top of his head. So, we have one that likes to follow examples. We get excited about dad's glasses and Sean's glasses in the morning, and that really seems to help.

We met a pair of 3 y.o. twin boys in target last weekend with the same indestructable glasses we have, and I imagine the same ones you have. These two were active and ALL BOY! We stopped and we all talked about their glasses and they were excited to show them off and to compare that they are the same as the baby's glasses. What do you know, the bespectacled twins ended up in the pew behind us at Mass the very next day! Adn all three enjoyed comparing their glasses again. Anyway, it seemed good for them to identify and talk about the others wearing glasses.

As for glasses-wearing rules, ours are pretty simple for now. He keeps them on through the day, but cannot wear them during alone time, nap time, bath time and night time. We (try) to keep them in the same place every time he takes them off and put them on as part of his changing routine when he gets up. I have noticed if left alone with his glasses he will start chewing them.

As I understand it, the industructable plastic glasses are like "training wheels" to get them used to having them on their face. So, now is a good time to start practicing the rules, but don't get discouraged if they are not followed all the time. I would suggest not moving into the more sylish/normal frames until he can follow all the rules with the "training" glasses.

I wish I could give you more tips for glasses wearing, but know that you have support in your glasses journey!

Anonymous said...

Our first daughter got glasses at 15 months. I haven't heard of these indestructible glasses that everyone is referencing--we had the option of little Disney frames, with the curved earpieces that help hold them behind their ears. We also used an elastic strap in the back in the beginning so that she really couldn't take them off by herself without enough struggling that we would see/hear. She also had to wear a patch for two hours a day and adjusting to that was far more difficult than the glasses. She just got her second pair (over two years and many scratches later) and these are just like adult glasses only smaller. She's very good about keeping them on or putting them only in certain places (the vanity in the bathroom or on top of the bookshelf in her room). We were pretty firm about this in the beginning and it's paid off, as we've never "lost" her glasses for more than a few minutes. Girls may just be easier than boys, but the whole transition into glasses went much more smoothly than I anticipated, so be hopeful! Now the biggest trouble is keeping the one year old from grabbing them off of her face whenever they're playing together!

Maria said...

My eldest daughter, now age three, began wearing glasses at eight months. We've been through a few pairs and found that getting the sturdiest frame is the most important factor. Our rules have been very simple: Keep your glasses on all the time, except nap and bedtimes. At those times, we have a special spot where she puts the glasses. I have worked at training her to take her glasses on and off and put them away at nap/bed time to make her feel responsible for their care.

The biggest problem for us has been younger siblings who have been fascinated with the glasses and tearing them off of their sister's face! I'm still working at training my two year old to leave her sister's glasses alone.

To anonymous above, how did you get your daughter to wear the eye patch? I'm supposed to start patching two hours a day and my normally easy-going three year old is dead set against it. I've tried lettering her watch her favorite show or doing her favorite activities during patch time. I've tried putting patches on all the kids and playing pirates (all the kids loved the patches, but her!). Nothing has worked! Any suggestions?

Elena said...

Maria, I am not anonymous but I thought I would let you know about our patching experience. Our six-year old boy had to be patched from the age of 18 months to almost four for 2-4 hours/day. (He was born with a congenital cataract.) He also had to wear a contact lens but that is another story! The only way I could succesfully patch was to put him in splints (on his arms). This sounds horrible but it was the only thing that would train him not to rip the patch off when he was unable to be reasoned with. I felt terrible but I had read of other mothers who had to do the same. I spent a lot of time holding him and dancing with him but this becomes impossible with other children around. I also resorted to using the TV a lot - horrible. I then discovered that he would open a tiny bit of the patch to watch with his good eye. In the end, the patching had no effect (except my own sanctification!) and he has very little vision in his left eye. Nevertheless, he is pretty much unhindered and reads far above his grade level. He wears glasses to protect his good eye. Good luck and God bless.

texas mommy said...

Wow, thanks for the great tips so far, ladies. I find it very helpful with Dash to lay out all the rules beforehand rather than retroactively. I love the idea of a "special place" to keep them. I may even have him decorate an old shoe box. And great heads up, Elena, about the chewing. No glasses in mouth is a great rule.

Erin, you son is ADORABLE in his little glasses!

Maria, I hadn't even thought about his 18 month old brother trying to rip them off, which he will certainly do in a matter of minutes. Thanks for the heads up about that!

Maria said...

Thanks for sharing your experience, Elena. Sounds like a serious ordeal! Maybe a talk with our doctor is in order to see how helpful the patching really is for my daughter. It better have a big payoff if I have to resort to a straight jacket!

Shauna said...

My twin 5 year old boys are both in glasses. One started wearing them at 8 months, and after about a week, he kept them on very well. We had more trouble with his brother trying to take them from him. After he got used to them, he'd actually reach for them from his crib. His brother got his glasses at the age of 4. I thought we'd have more trouble with him adjusting since he was older, but we really didn't. The first week or so, we let him take a few breaks during the day with them off, since it takes a little while to adjust and they think their eyes are hurting, but after that we haven't had any trouble. We have used the metal frames with the wrap around ear piece from the beginning and they've worked well. They do bend them while wrestling and have broken arms off of them, but they fix pretty easily and our eyeglass shop adjusts them at no charge. The boys have a spot in their room where they put their glasses at night, and during the day they're supposed to put them on a counter if they take them off for any reason like changing shirts. Good luck!

Karen said...

No glasses in the moon bounce.

Kyra said...

I saw this great idea from a mom friend whose son is three, although my own son doesn't wear glasses so i can't validate that it works...
They bought him a big teddy bear who stays seated in the rocker in his room, and told him the glasses always need to be either on him or on Teddy. So when he takes them off he puts them right on the teddy bear. According to mom so far the glasses have not been broken or lost!