Hesperian Health Guides

Helping your child use the sight she has

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HealthWiki > Helping Children Who Are Blind > Chapter 4: Finding Out What Your Child Can See > Helping your child use the sight she has

a girl touching objects on the floor, including a spoon, a ball, and a box.

If your child can see a little:

Give her lots of different objects to look at. This will encourage her to become interested in the world around her and to use her sight more.
a man holding a small child who is reaching out to touch flowers in a vase.
One way to show her different objects is to walk around the house. Talk about what you see, and encourage her to touch
and hold things.

Let your child hold things or move her body in the way that helps her see best, even if it looks awkward to you. For example:

a girl walking with a stick while looking up.
the girl looking down.
the girl looking to one side.

If your child sees only a small area in front of her, she will see more if she looks up, down, and to the right and left as she moves instead of straight ahead.

a girl playing in the light from a lamp.
If your child can see a little, try changing the amount of light, the kind of light, or the direction the light comes from. See what works best.
a girl standing in the doorway of a house, looking outside.
If she has trouble seeing when the amount of light changes, teach her to stop moving and to wait for her eyes to adjust.

Notice if your child tends to pay attention to certain:

  • colors
  • pattern
  • sizes
  • color contrasts
HCWB Ch4 Page 30-1.png
If she does, you can use these preferences to help her learn
and move about safely.
a baby lying on a blanket with a colored border.
To catch her baby’s interest, this
mother rolls a brightly colored ball
across a white cloth.
Use bright colors to mark the edges
of objects or places. This will help
her learn to recognize places and shapes.

a child standing outside a house.
Here’s the yellow ribbon. This is my friend José’s door.

When she is older, brightly colored ribbons, cloths, or objects can help her know where she is.

a girl walking down steps with brightly colored edges.
Brightly colored tape or paint can help a child know when the height of the floor changes.

Will my child’s sight get worse?

To answer this question, you will need to know what causes your child’s difficulty seeing. For more information, see the chapter “Why Children Lose Their Vision and What We Can Do.”