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Do Eyeballs Grow?

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The size of your eyes is an essential part of what keeps your eyes healthy–if ever your eyes are disproportionate in size, you can have a greater risk of developing eye problems. Eyeballs do grow in normal ways , though, but also potentially in some abnormal ways.

Eyeballs grow throughout childhood

A newborn baby’s eyeballs are seventy percent of the size of their full adult-sized eyes. This can explain why babies appear to have such big eyes in comparison to the size of their heads and bodies.

The size of a newborn’s eyeballs is about .7 inches in length. Throughout infancy, they will grow to just about .74 inches. Over the course of childhood one’s eyes gradually grow until they eventually reach the adult size of 1 inches in length.

Errors in growth can occur before the eyeball has reached its full size, causing vision concerns

It is possible that the change in the shape of the eyes will be the cause of errors developing in the eyes’ focal point. Farsightedness, also known as hyperopia, can occur when the eye becomes too short in length, causing the focal point for images to be placed behind the retina. If this is the case for a child, they may have to squint to be able to read, and they could develop headaches, fatigue, and eye strain.

Nearsightedness, also known as myopia, is the result of the eyeball growing too long. In this case, the focal point will not reach the retina. This will cause a child to become less able to see objects in the distance. Results of this also include squinting, headaches, and eye strain. Your Calgary optometrist can diagnose these concerns.

One or both of the eyes may also become misaligned

Disproportionate eye lengths or eyeballs that are not positioned correctly can cause one’s eyes to become misaligned. This can be the cause of a condition called strabismus. In this condition, depth perception can become affected, possibly leading to reading disabilities. Another condition that can develop from misaligned eyes is amblyopia. This is a condition in which the two eyes do not send matching images to the brain in order that they can be combined into a single image. Vision loss may be an end result.

In order to catch these concerns before they are able to develop, we recommend you bring your child into an optometrist in Calgary once before the age of three–earlier is better, especially if your family has a history of vision problems.

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