What is Myopia?
Myopia, or more commonly known as near-sightedness, is the result of oblong growth of the eye whether that be from genetics or lifestyle; the eyeball grows too long making images focus improperly on the retina and causing distant objects to appear blurry. And as children are spending more and more time on a screen and less time outdoors, myopia is quickly becoming an epidemic. For a quick survey assessing your child's risk of myopic progression click here.
Consequences of Myopia
The consequences of myopia extend past simply needing thicker glasses or being unable to see the whiteboard, letting myopia go untreated may leave your child at risk of irreversible damage to central vision as myopic macular degeneration is nearly 10 times greater in myopia over -3.00D and over 40 times greater in myopia over -6.00D. Additionally, the risk of glaucoma, cataracts, and even retinal detachment (which can result in permanent vision loss) increases with myopia power.
What can we do?
At least 1-2 hours of outdoor activity has been correlated with later onset and reduced progression of myopia. But here at Almaden Family Optometric Center, we also have various options you can choose from to slow the progression of your child's myopia. Dr. Jennifer Hsieh can fit you with Misight contact lenses (the first and only FDA approved soft contact lens to slow myopia progression in children 8-12 years old), the Paragon CRT Ortho-K nighttime contact lenses, or the NaturalVue multifocal contact lenses all of which can help with myopia control. Read more about Misight soft contact lenses below.