My Kid Won’t Wear Their Glasses. What Can I Do?
You and your child have gone through the eye tests and frame selection process and you’ve brought your new glasses home. The worst of it is over, surely? The next challenge is getting your child to wear them.
First of all, if you are struggling to get your child to wear their glasses, remember you are not alone. Coming to terms with wearing glasses as an adult can be a challenging transition, so why would this be any different for a child? It is very common for kids of all ages to be resistant to wearing glasses, and – as with many things parenting – there isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ solution. But there are some strategies to help make the transition easier.
It is important to start things off on the right foot. Equipping yourself with the right tools is an essential part of the equation. A good optician should be able to help you and your child make the best possible decision regarding the choice of glasses, everything from getting the right prescription, fit and material. If those bases are covered, you’re off to a good start.
Approach the change slowly
If your child is adverse to change in general, a good approach is to take slowly introduce the concept. Having short, designated periods of time for your child to wearing glasses is a good way to transition. It could be just during school time for the first week, or only for when watching TV. From there, scale up slowly until your child has adapted to wearing glasses on a full time basis.
Set a routine
Setting any new habit can be a challenge, even more so when the child is reluctant to begin with. Be very intentional with your child wearing the glasses and integrate it into your morning routine, just like brushing their teeth or packing their bags for school. Decide on a moment in your child’s morning routine for them to put on their glasses and make sure you stick to it. Eventually a new habit will form.
Open their eyes to the world of glasses
Depending on the age of your child, there may not be many kids in their class wearing glasses. This can make it all the difficult for your child to get on board with the idea of wearing theirs for fear of being part of the minority. To help battle, try to make a point out all of your child’s favourite glasses-wearing character. Whether it’s Harry Potter or Pedro Pony from Peppa Pig, your child is likely to be more excited to wear their glasses with a little nudge from their favourite fictional character.
Double down with sunglasses
If possible, get your child a pair of matching prescription sunglasses. Sunglasses are often considered a fun accessory and, contrary to regular glasses which are mostly needed at school, wearing them is linked with having fun in the great outdoors. You might find your child more keen for sunglasses at first, but over time, they could come around to the idea of glasses indoors, too.
Bring on extra help
For many children who are new to wearing glasses, a big factor will be the reaction of their peers. Bullying is a challenging topic and needs to be dealt with delicately and individually. But there are some things that can help universally. The first is to make a conscious effort to boost your child’s confidence around wearing glasses. Positive reinforcement goes a long way and even if your child seems to shrug it off, know that your positivity is being heard. Secondly, establish a good rapport with your child’s teacher. Let them know that wearing glasses is new for your child and ask them to monitor how things develop at school in order to catch sign of bullying as soon as possible.
Above all, have faith! Patience will work wonders. As challenging as it can be, it is really important to keep working at it. Wearing glasses in childhood can help prevent issues further down the line.