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Thread: Need advice on working with Pediatrics for eyewear?

  1. #1
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    Need advice on working with Pediatrics for eyewear?

    I've been offered to interview for a position with a pediatric ophthalmology practice but I've never worked with children and I'm nervous to accept. I've worked primarily with adults and geriatrics over the course of my 6 years in the industry, half in private practice. I know that taking measurements with children can be quite different than adults and I'd like if someone could share their experiences or considerations working with children so I can make a good decision. Any advice would be most helpful.

    *Edit* I had to edit my initial question as I realized i accidentally deleted a very important part before posting and I didn't catch it. Not offered the position yet. Sorry guys.
    Last edited by Crystalpluto; 11-01-2021 at 12:13 PM. Reason: part of initial statement deleted by accident

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    OptiBoard Professional IIxIPariahIxII's Avatar
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    I've absolutely loved working with pediatric over the years. Given it's opthalmology, you'll probably see more of the disorders and therapy. Measurement wise, most kids are well behaved and are better than adults lol. If you have one with an eye disorder, just take the PD one eye at a time so they can focus easier. If you have a very young child, where a pupilometer won't give you a small enough reading, just take them by hand. Usually pediatrics will have some fun little tools to help kids focus while you take them. Just takes some adjustment. Be patient, that's huge. Communicate and don't treat it like a trip to the doctor. Have fun when they're picking out glasses. Generally that goes a long ways. Be informative with the parents, especially in that setting. That's about it. Make sure you take PDs every year, OC heights. Kids are the main reason I'm still in optics.

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    Thank you very much for the information!!

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    OptiBoard Professional OptiBoard Silver Supporter Optical Roy's Avatar
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    1 easy way to take OC and possible PD, with the frames on, tell them to touch your face mask, used to be nose, lol. They focus enough on that, that dotting the lens is easy. If need be, occlude 1 eye, then the other.
    Roy W. Jackson, Sr. ABOC

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    OptiBoard Professional KrystleClear's Avatar
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    In my opinion, working with kids is a lot easier than adults when it comes to the optician role. Now, being a ophthalmic tech for a pediatric office - heck no. The moment those dilation drops hit a small child's eye, they screetch like a banshee and sometimes kick. I don't have the patience for that. On the glasses side, we get to be the fun guys who don't put drops in their eyes. They are almost always a lot of fun to work with. There will be a kid every so often who is really not happy about glasses, but there are ways to make it a fun, pleasant experience for them. Take time to show them the proper way tp put their glasses on and take them off, and how to clean and store them safely. Have stickers on hand. Explain the prescription to the parents and explain the lenses you are designing for them. There is no better feeling than seeing a kid smile when they get their first pair of glasses and can finally see. I miss working with kids - we are an ophthalmology practice that doesn't take most Medicaid plans or vision insurance, so our kiddos are few and far between. :(
    Krystle

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    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
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    If anything, your biggest challenge will be dealing with the parents of kids getting glasses. You'll often have kids with different ideas of what they want than their parents, and it can be nearly impossible to impress upon an opinionated parent the importance of a kid actually wanting to wear their glasses.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

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    What's up? drk's Avatar
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    I think that's a bad take, my friend.

    Parentskids are inseperable. You don't play to the kid. The kid is the entire property of the parent and what they say, goes.

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    Agreed, Andrew. I tell the parent if the child doesn't like them, they won't wear them and THAT is a huge waste of money. Usually, the parents see the wisdom of letting the child get something they like.

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    OptiBoard Professional KrystleClear's Avatar
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    I kind of agree with Andrew. The parent can obviously do whatever they want and of course they make the calls, BUT if they want their money to be well spent and for the kid to actually want to wear them, the kid does have to like them. If they hate the glasses, they won't wear them. I have even had parents say they think their kid broke the glasses on purpose. Nothing wrong with at least explaining that to the parent and if they don't care, at least you tried! Sometimes, though, kids make bad choices too.
    Krystle

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    What's up? drk's Avatar
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    Parents aren't dumb. And it's not my position to inform them about their kids, except for technical issues.

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    Quote Originally Posted by drk View Post
    Parents aren't dumb. And it's not my position to inform them about their kids, except for technical issues.
    You must have magical parents in Ohio. I can think of several sets of dumb parents I have worked with in the past couple of months

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    Master OptiBoarder AngeHamm's Avatar
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    The kid is our patient. The parent is not. We have a responsibility to fit the patient with glasses that are going to do the job, and they are only going to work if the patient will wear them.

    Most parents are responsible caretakers. Some are bullies.
    I'm Andrew Hamm and I approve this message.

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    OptiBoard Professional OptiBoard Silver Supporter Optical Roy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AngeHamm View Post
    The kid is our patient. The parent is not. We have a responsibility to fit the patient with glasses that are going to do the job, and they are only going to work if the patient will wear them.

    Most parents are responsible caretakers. Some are bullies.
    Had a dad, his son refracted to a -2.00 OU, he insisted his son was perfect and didn't need specs! I trial framed with a +2.00 OU and let him look through it, when he asked his son to describe an image, they looked at the same time. He then shut up and let his son get the glasses he needed and wanted.
    Roy W. Jackson, Sr. ABOC

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    OptiWizard
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    You can't do pediatrics without including the parents. Educate the parents and demonstrate that you know what you're doing by including the children. Good opticianry and respect for decision making shouldn't be mutually exclusive. Some of my best experiences as an optician have been fitting children. Take the time and do it well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Optical Roy View Post
    Had a dad, his son refracted to a -2.00 OU, he insisted his son was perfect and didn't need specs! I trial framed with a +2.00 OU and let him look through it, when he asked his son to describe an image, they looked at the same time. He then shut up and let his son get the glasses he needed and wanted.
    +1 It is a balance between making the kid happy and the parents happy. Just like the rest of the population... some parents are great and some are jerks...some kids are great and some are jerks. As opticians... we get them all and have to deal with it. (By the way... my psych degree helps a little!)

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