Problems with sight directly affect your ability to interact with the world around you. Around 4.2 million people in America aged 40 or older suffer from low vision or near blindness. Many eye problems start much younger and are often less severe, including refractive issues like myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.
50% of people struggle with myopia (nearsightedness) and rates of childhood myopia are increasing. Solutions like glasses and contact lenses can help mitigate the condition, but can you correct the underlying problem? If so, how would the process work? Let’s examine this by looking at myopia, its causes and symptoms, and what treatments are available for children.
The medical team at Bronx Eye Associates in Pelham Gardens in the Bronx, New York, are specialists able to help those seeking support for their child’s myopia or other eye problems.
Myopia is a refractive eye condition that means you can see fine up close, but things farther away appear blurry and hard to discern. In children, it generally starts between ages 6-14 and affects an estimated 5% of preschoolers, 9% of school-age children, and 30% of adolescents.
The condition often stabilizes between ages 20-40. However, there is a risk of myopia leading to other vision ailments like retinal detachment, glaucoma, and cataracts.
Causes and symptoms
We see due to light passing through several parts of our eyes, such as the cornea, pupil, iris, lens, and retina. You can develop myopia if your eye is too long from front to back, the cornea is too curved, or the lens is an improper shape.
As a result, your child may experience symptoms such as:
- Blurriness when looking at far objects
- Fatigue during tasks where they have to look farther away
The exact cause of the condition is not entirely understood, but genetic and environmental factors can affect how people develop it. If parents have myopia, there is a good chance their kids will as well.
Treatments to slow myopia in children
While traditional glasses and contact lenses can usually correct your child’s vision, myopia can’t be cured or reversed. Therefore, treatments focus on preventing the condition from worsening, such as:
We use low-dose atropine eye drops in children as young as 5 and as old as 18. The drops are thought to help by reducing the length of the eye.
Peripheral defocus contact lenses are a type of multifocal lens. They can help improve the effects of myopia by correcting blurry distance vision.
Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) lenses
Ortho-K lenses flatten your cornea as you sleep to improve myopia. The changes are primarily short-term, but some treatment effects can offer long-term improvement.
To slow down nearsightedness and protect your vision as you age, spend less time around digital screens and more time outside with physical activities.
MiSight contact lens
MiSight are the first lenses approved for managing the progression of myopia in children, and can be prescribed in kids as young as eight years old. The soft, disposable lenses redirect how light hits the retina using concentric rings, preventing the eye from lengthening. We are the number one practice offering MiSight contact lenses in the Bronx.
Myopia is treatable, but not curable. With our help, your child’s vision can improve, making their life easier. If you’re ready to help your child’s vision, make an appointment with the team at Bronx Eye Associates today.