Key To Success in School: Myopia Reduction
Updated: Sep 8
School has started, so you probably spent the summer relaxing and most recently prepping your kids for school. This has included lots of shopping for clothes, school supplies, and computers. Next on the list was dentist appointments and vaccines and sports physicals. And of course eye exams.
Wait, you forgot eye exams? But vision is CRUCIAL for success in school, sports, and life. Oh, your kids haven’t complained? Hopefully that’s because they’ve been outside playing, swimming, hiking, biking, not tied to phones and computers. Even if they haven’t complained, yearly vision exams are the only way to protect their sight and give them the best chance to do well.
Vision is our most important sense, and irreplaceable once lost. So many diseases can be found at eye exams, even in kids who see and feel fine. And remember myopia, or nearsightedness? Once it starts, it can quickly get worse so the child needs thicker and stronger glasses that are awkward, uncomfortable, and subject them to ridicule. It also subjects them to a greater risk of potentially blinding eye diseases as they get older, too.
Myopia is now treatable, and I don’t mean with contact lenses or glasses. We actually have methods to slow down and possibly stop vision from getting worse. Children don’t have to be reliant on heavy glasses or uncomfortable contact lenses. The risk of eye diseases later in life can be greatly lessened by starting your children on a myopia management regimen earlier rather than later.
Probably the most popular technique is with overnight retainers. The patient sleeps in the retainers that gently reshape the cornea, or front surface of the eye, changing how light is focused into the eye. Upon waking, the retainers are removed and now glasses or contact lenses are not needed to see during the daytime! Pretty darn miraculous! Not only do these provide freedom from wearing vision correction during the day, but they have been shown to radically slow down the progression of nearsightedness. Your child gets therapeutic effects, daytime freedom, greater self esteem, and lowered disease risk. These are great for all ages; even elementary-age kids can wear these successfully.
Dual-focus daily contact lenses are another option. These do not provide freedom from contact lenses during the daytime but still provide the therapeutic effects of retarding the progression of myopia and provide the self-esteem of not having glasses on the face. These come as single use so no cleaning, thinking, or reminding, great for you and your children.
Not ready to put things in the eyes? Pharmaceutical treatment is fine for younger kids. One drop at bedtime (or when the child is asleep), child wakes up and wears glasses like usual during the daytime.
One or more of these options is sure to be right for your children, so seek out a myopia specialist to help you decide. Call us if you have questions. Heck, we may answer the phone. 253-432-4303