Your child’s vision is very important to overall development. It is one of the most important senses for a child’s development. Nearly 85% of a child’s early learning occurs through vision. Children who have a visual impairment are at a greater risk for developmental delays or communicative disorders.
It is recommended that your child have an annual eye exam starting at three years of age, or earlier if you have concerns. You may book an appointment with an optometrist and do not need a referral. Learn more at: OHIP Coverage for Eye Care Services.
For more information on developmental milestones and early warning signs go to services for children who are blind or have low vision.
When should I have my child’s eyes examined?
The Ontario Association of Optometrists recommends that children have their eyes examined at annually or as recommended by your optometrist.
Does my child have to be able to read to have their vision tested?
No, eye examinations can be done at any age.
Are eye exams covered by OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan)?
OHIP covers an eye exam every twelve months for children 19 years old and younger.
What are the signs that my child can’t see well?
According to the Ontario Association of Optometrists, there are often no signs that a child has a vision problem. For this reason regular eye exams are important.
Do eye exams hurt?
No, an eye exam won’t hurt but the doctor may need to put drops in your child’s eye. These drops may sting but only for a few seconds.
For more information on developmental milestones click here.
For more information on eye exams click here.
It's better to identify hearing problems sooner than later. When hearing problems are not detected, they can affect your child's ability to learn to talk, which can also lead to behavioral and emotional problems. If you have any concerns about your child's hearing, contact your health care practitioner or audiologist.
An audiologist is a hearing specialist who can do a variety of hearing tests. You do not need a referral to see an audiologist, your health care provider refers your child because of a specific concern. Learn more...
All newborns are eligible to have their hearing screened. It is a very simple process, free of charge, done in the hospital before the baby is discharged. If your baby is identified as having a problem you will be notified for a follow-up test. If your baby doesn't get screened while in the hospital it will be done through an Infant Hearing Program in the community. Early detection and intervention is critical to future language development.
Families living in Peterborough, Northumberland and Haliburton Counties, and the City of Kawartha Lakes areas can contact the Tri-Regional Infant Hearing Program at 1-888-703-5437 and select option #4 to book an appointment.
For newborn hearing screening and hearing loss, and developmental milestones click here. Information is available in many languages.
Is your child eligible for assessment through the Infant Hearing Program(IHP)?
Four Months and under
If your child is under four months of age and you suspect a hearing loss, your child is eligible for a hearing screening from your local infant hearing program. If a REFER result is obtained, a referral to an Infant Hearing Program Audiologist will be made.
Four to 24 Months
If your child is between four and 24 months of age and your doctor states there is a risk factor for permanent hearing impairment such as meningitis or a head injury or there are concerns of a permanent hearing loss, your child is eligible for an audiology assessment by an IHP trained audiologist.
Two Years and over
If your child is over two years of age, a permanent childhood hearing impairment must have been identified by an audiologist. Ask your audiologist to send the audiology assessment confirming a permanent childhood hearing impairment to the Tri-Regional Infant Hearing Program (fax: 905-472-7553) or contact the Service Provider in your area who will assist you in completing the referral.
Services provided by the Infant Hearing Program are publicly-funded so there is no charge to the parent(s)/caregiver(s). If you live in York or Durham Regions, Peterborough, Northumberland or Haliburton Counties or the City of Kawartha Lakes, contact the Tri-Regional Infant Hearing Program at: 1-888-703-5437 and choose option #4 for the Infant Hearing Program.
Otitis media is another name for ear infection. It is an infection of the middle ear caused by bacteria or viruses. Fluid builds up in the ears, which makes it difficult for a child to hear. They are most common in children between six months and three years of age and usually occur with a cold. Ear infections can affect a child's hearing and lead to delayed speech and language. If you suspect your child may have an ear infection, see your health care provider to be assessed. He may or may not need to be treated with antibiotics.
For more information on ear infections click here.
Hearing It's better to identify hearing problems sooner than later. When hearing problems are not detected, they can affect your child's ability to learn to talk, which can also lead to behavioral and emotional problems. If you have any…
Your child’s vision is very important to overall development. It is one of the most important senses for a child’s development. Nearly 85% of a child’s early learning occurs through vision. Children who have a visual impairment are at…