Myopia is the technical term for what most people call nearsightedness. It’s a disorder affecting the eyes that prevents affected people from seeing faraway objects clearly. A person with myopia can still see objects up close clearly, but anything far away — text on a sign, people, the television across the room — is blurry and even illegible.
In most people with myopia typically, the eyeball itself is slightly elongated or more curved. As a result, the light received from faraway images doesn’t bend correctly and cannot focus properly.
This is why nearsighted people often squint to try to make sense of a sign that’s far away. They are slightly manipulating the shape of their eye in an attempt to gain more focus.
Myopia is much more likely to occur when one or both parents are myopic. Research shows that modern lifestyles also may influence the development of myopia. Children are spending a lot more time playing and doing school work on digital devices like smartphones and tablets, and are spending less time playing outdoors. Even children without myopic parents are still at a 25% chance of developing myopia because of the changes to our visual demands.
The Symptoms of Myopia
The most obvious symptom of myopia is not being able to see objects that are far away. If others can read a sign clearly and you cannot, for example, you’re likely dealing with myopia. Many children are first diagnosed in the early years at school, where it becomes clear to a parent or teacher that the child cannot see what others are seeing.
There are other common symptoms of myopia as well. Watch out for these, especially in children who might not know they need a corrective vision solution.
Eyestrain, especially after long periods (classroom, watching TV from across the room, etc.)
Headaches without another explanation
Squinting to try to improve vision, especially of faraway objects
Can Myopia Be Treated?
Yes, myopia or nearsightedness is highly treatable. Most people who have myopia will be able to see perfectly or nearly perfectly with the right pair of eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Does Myopia Get Worse?
Often, it does. Children with myopia often see their nearsightedness progress through childhood and adolescence. It’s much rarer for myopia to get worse in early adulthood, but old age can be another period of progression.
Can Myopia Be Slowed?
Yes, it can. Many people with myopia do not realize that there are treatments available that do more than simply correct vision. Some treatments can actually slow the progression of myopia, or even temporarily correct it without further intervention.
While we can not fully prevent myopia, there are currently two FDA approved treatments to help to slow the progression of myopia and many off label options as well. We will perform a full eye exam on your child and prescribe the treatment that is right for them.
MiSight® Contact Lenses
Children ages 8 to 12 have a contact lens solution that’s FDA-approved to slow the progression of myopia. MiSight lenses must be worn daily for at least 10 hours. They correct vision in the moment, of course, but they also slow the lengthening of the eye (and as a result, the progression of myopia).
Ortho-K or Corneal Refractive Therapy is an FDA-approved therapy using a rigid gas permeable contact lens worn overnight to gently reshape the eye. Our doctors are certified in fitting Abiliti Overnight lenses which are the first FDA approved Ortho-K lenses for myopia management in children. This lens is custom made to fit your child’s corneal shape, including children with mild astigmatism.
This option is best for patients outside of the parameters for other treatment lenses, due to a high prescription, astigmatism, or an irregular cornea. Hybrid lenses combine two types of materials into one unique lens. The center is made of rigid material to give you clear and stable vision, while the surrounding soft skirt keeps the lenses comfortable throughout the day.
Both parts of your SynergEyes iD lenses are personalized for you based on the shape and vision requirements of your unique eyes, providing you comfortable, personalized vision.
Even those with astigmatism will experience clear, stable vision, without the hassle of blur caused by toric lens rotation.
Click here to learn more about the application and removal of Duette Hybrid Contact Lenses.
View the video below to learn to remove your Synergeyes iD Lenses.
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