Treatment of Myopia in Children

When you first find out that your child is short sighted, there are many feelings that might appear, before asking and learning about myopia treatment options.

Surprise, concern, alarm and even guilt can be felt in learning that your child’s vision is not perfect at long distances. These are all natural reactions and it is reassuring to know that this condition is common and even increasing in current times, worldwide.

In the US, at least 25% to 41% of the population has myopia.¹ In some Asian countries, short sightedness in individuals is as high as 70% to 90%! ² As well as being a genetic condition, there seems to be a growing connection to the increased use of screens by kids and also the fact that they are spending less time outdoors. ³

Myopia progresses with age and, without treatment, may impact the academic and physical performance of your child in their school days.

The good news, however, is that there are several courses of action that can slow the progress of the condition and, while there is no cure for myopia, treatment options are more available and effective than ever. Although it is never too late, the earlier these treatments are started, the better the end results.

What methods can be used to correct myopia?

Once diagnosed, there is a range of treatments we can offer for short-sightedness in children:

1. Glasses
We stock a wide range of glasses suitable for children and can make special spectacle lenses for their condition. Our specially trained staff can help with selection and ensure that your child will be happy and excited to be fitted with their first pair of glasses.

2. Contact lenses
There is no lower age limit on the wearing of contact lenses, in fact children often adapt better than adults to contact lens use. We will assess your child’s suitability for lenses and check regularly to make sure that they can handle care, insertion and removal.

3. Orthokeratology treatment (Ortho-k)
This is a well established non-surgical alternative vision correction that can also slow the development of the condition.⁴ Night wearing of contact lenses gently reshapes the cornea to allow natural vision during the day without the need for glasses or lenses.

4. MiSight®
Specifically for the treatment of short sightedness in children, MiSight® involves wearing soft multifocal contact lenses that help reduce the rate of progression of the myopia.⁵ Only available from a registered optometrist, come in for more information on this great new development in children’s eyecare.

We will help you choose the most suitable treatment for your child and our expert staff will assist you at every stage throughout the process. Our modern facility is equipped with the latest eye care and diagnostic equipment, enabling us to create the best plan to improve your child’s vision.

Myopia – What does this mean for my child?

The most important thing is to reassure your child that this is a very common condition and, probably like many of their friends, they will simply need to wear some eyewear to correct their vision and help them to see perfectly.

Spending more time in natural light, outside, has been shown to slow the progression of myopia, so encourage your child to spend at least two hours per day outdoors in the fresh air.⁶

Whatever treatment you decide to follow, you can be sure that Insight Optometrists of Indooroopilly will be with you every step of the way to ensure your child has the very best eye care and vision correction at all times.

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1. Vitale S, Sperduto RD, Ferris FL. Increased prevalence of myopia in the United States between 1971–1972 and 1999–2004. Arch Ophthalmol. 2009 Dec;127(12):1632-9.

2. Lin LL, Shih YF, Tsai CB, et al. Epidemiologic study of ocular refraction among schoolchildren in Taiwan in 1995. Optom Vis Sci. 1999 May;76(5):275-81.

3. Rose KA, Morgan IG, Ip J, et al. Outdoor activity reduces the prevalence of myopia in children. Ophthalmology. 2008 Aug;115(8):1279-85. Epub 2008 Feb 21.

4. Helen A. Swarbrick, PhD, et al. Myopia Control during Orthokeratology Lens Wear in Children. Ophthalmology 2015;122:620-630 ª 2015 by the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

5. CooperVision 2009. The Dual-focus Inhibition of Myopia Evaluation in New Zealand (DIMENZ) study report.

6. Mingguang He, MD, PhD, et al. Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center, Guangzhou, China. JAMA. 2015;314:1137-1139, 1142-1148.

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