Myopia on the Rise
Myopia (nearsightedness) is one of the most common vision impairments. It’s a type of refractive error, like hyperopia, astigmatism, or presbyopia. Yet, only myopia is the talk of the town—and the world. As a result, health experts are watching the rise of myopia, with predictions that half the world will have myopia by 2050.
Although there’s no one reason myopia occurs, it’s a growing concern in children. From screen time to genetics, there are several risk factors.
Myopia might be widespread, but it’s also manageable. Myopia control uses a variety of methods for slowing the progression of myopia. The sooner your child is diagnosed, the better the vision outcomes with myopia control.
If your child has myopia, visit your optometrist regularly to monitor their vision and eye health.
How Does Myopia Affect Vision?
With myopia, the incorrect focus causes blurry distance vision, but close vision remains clear. The error can be minor, presenting as low myopia, or severe, presenting as high myopia.
Children with low myopia might not notice their vision is blurred without the help of an eye exam.
However, children with high myopia can experience greater difficulty with distance-based activities like taking notes in a classroom, going to the movies, or shooting hoops. Prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses can help correct vision, making tasks easier.
What Is Myopia Control?
Myopia control is more than vision correction. It’s about protecting your child’s eye health and preventing worsening symptoms. If untreated, myopia can progress and cause significant eye problems, including degenerative myopia (blindness), retinal detachment, or glaucoma.
There are several options for controlling myopia. Some are noninvasive, like corrective eyewear, eye exercises, contact lenses, or eye drops.
Pacific Pier Optometry offers 2 additional methods that are common for myopia control.
Orthokeratology (ortho-k) uses contact lenses worn overnight to help correct vision problems, including myopia. The process is similar to braces, as the contact lens reshapes the eye while your child sleeps.
Vision can be significantly improved in the first few days, but changes typically take 2 weeks. However, the lenses need to be worn regularly, as directed by your eye doctor, to maintain the new eye shape.
The contact lens needs to be fitted for the best effect.
Using atropine to slow myopia progression is nothing new, with more than a century of use to back it up. Today, atropine drops are often a part of eye exams, as the solution is used for pupil dilation during diagnostic testing.
Topical atropine drops work by temporarily paralyzing and then relaxing the focusing muscle inside the eye. The process tells the eye to stop growing, slowing the progression of myopia.
Low-dose atropine drops are an effective treatment with few side effects.
Helping Your Child Manage Myopia
Your child’s visual abilities can impact everything they do. From learning to social activities, caring for their eyes is a difference you can see. If you have questions about your child’s eye care, talk to our team. We’re here to make their visual experience more comfortable.
Visit your optometrist at Pacific Pier Optometry to learn more about myopia control.
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- 1431 7th Street Ste 101
- Santa Monica, CA 90401
- Monday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Tuesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Wednesday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Thursday: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Friday: Closed
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- Sunday: Closed
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