SPECTACLE FRAMES FOR CHILDREN
When selecting the correct frame for a child, there are a few additional factors that we have to take into consideration. Let’s take a closer look at how we approach frame selection for the little people in our lives.
FRAMES FOR BABIES
From time to time we see very young children or even babies in our practices that have to wear glasses. By far the greatest challenge for us and parents alike is keeping the glasses on. There are specific frames that have been designed for babies that have special design characteristics. Apart from smaller frame sizing, special consideration is given to the frame bridge design. Babies normally have very little nose bridge to support the frames on their face, so frames are designed with extra low bridges that have more nose pad protrusion. This assists in holding glasses off the cheeks to provide comfort. Metal frames are often fitted with silicone saddle bridges that provide added grip with adjustability to allow fine tuning of angles and clearances.
Often babies’ frames will have an integrated adjustable head strap that keeps the frames on. Another feature we sometimes see is "curl sides". These sides have ear pieces that curl around in a circle, much like the old school curl sides once seen on vintage round frames from a by-gone era. We can also convert some regular frame sides to curl sides which greatly assists in keeping the glasses on the child's face and in position.
Another common solution for keeping the glasses on is fitting temple extensions. These clever silicon extensions push on to the ends of regular frame sides and provide a hook that turns under the ears. These are very comfortable and have the advantage of being easy to remove if they are no longer needed.
Most children's frames are made with extra durability in mind. Some of the common ways that manufacturers achieve this is by using tough injection moulded plastics, using super flexible materials in both plastic and metal, and by beefing up hinges and joint components.
ROOM TO GROW
This is an important consideration and one unique to children's’ spectacles. Our goal here is to find a frame that meets the immediate sizing needs, but also allows for some growth in the child’s face and head size. Typically, we will look at the expected lifespan of the prescription and do our best to ensure the frame will continue to fit correctly for this period. Children's’ prescriptions are more likely to change more rapidly as they develop, so children's’ spectacles typically need more regular changes. This provides the opportunity to up-size the frames to optimize the fit with each prescription change.
The child's age also comes into consideration and the likelihood of "growth spurts" are taken into account. It's important to pay close attention to the length of the frame sides or "temples", because as children grow, they need increasingly longer temples on their frames. Often, our Optical Dispensers are able to reposition the temple bend as a child grows to keep them fitting correctly.
STYLE AND FASHION
It would be remiss of us to not consider frame style for kids. If you have to wear glasses, you might as well look cool doing it!
Fortunately, the designers of children's spectacle frames have not forgotten the all-important need to move with fashion. We are regularly updating our ranges of boys and girls’ frames as they continue to evolve with current style trends. Bright vibrant colours bring excitement to kids frames and helping children pick their new frames can be lots of fun for all involved. As with adult frames, children's frames shapes and styles are often dictated by fashion trends around the globe. We realise, however, that function and fitting must come first and will always help in the selection of a stylish frame that is suitable for your child's size and prescription requirements . Round shapes have certainly enjoyed a come back in recent times which we have seen pleasing those Harry Potter fans out there!