Could your child be short-sighted?

What is short-sightedness (myopia)?

Short-sightedness or nearsightedness are the common terms for a the eye condition, myopia. Myopia usually starts in childhood and progressively gets worse as your child grows up, making this a very common condition for both adults and children. Research shows that there is around 80 million children around the world who are currently affected by myopia, but alarmingly this number is set to rise sharply by 2050. The average onset age of myopia is also seen as becoming younger across the years - in 1983 it was 11 years old, where by 2000 this age had decreased to 8 years old.

What causes myopia?

There are two main factors which can mean your child is more at risk of developing myopia - genetics and lifestyle. If a child has one or both parents with myopia, the probability of myopia increases to almost 50%. However it is our modern lifestyle that is concerning us as rates of myopia rise around the world, such as increased time on devices such as gaming devices, tables and phones along with decreased activity outdoors and poor lighting levels.

What can I do to manage myopia in my kids?

Getting your kids to spend at least 90 minutes outdoors and updating their glasses and contact lenses regularly can help to manage the changes in their eyes as they grow. However there are now other options to help manage and treat myopia and have shown to slow down the progression in their eyes -

Myopia Management Contact Lenses - MiSight daily contact lenses have been designed specifically for myopia in children and research has shown that they have been able to slow the progression down by more than half vs those in traditional design contact lenses.

Ortho-Keratology - Is a reversible non-surgical technique using specially designed rigid contact lenses which are worn overnight to reshape the surface of the eye to provide clear vision through the day (works like a dental retainer!)

Further options may be available and more suitable for your kids, so if you think your child might be myopic or has never had their eyes tested, book in with our one of our Optometrists to discuss what options work best for you and your family.


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