March 17, 2022
Myopia or nearsightedness commonly develops in children between six to 14 years old. Childhood myopia affects five percent of preschoolers, close to nine percent of elementary school children, and about 30 percent of kids in their adolescent years.
A child has a greater likelihood of becoming nearsighted if their parent has Myopia. If one parent has myopia it increases the child’s chance by 3x and doubles to 6x more likely if both parents are myopic.
Risk Factors for Myopia in Children
Too much screen time
Environment and lack of outdoor exposure
Myopia Development in Children
Myopia develops in children when the eyeball becomes elongated from the front to the back. The condition also occurs when a child has a steeply curved cornea. As a result, the light entering the eye falls short of the light-sensitive tissues located at the back of the eye called the retina. Consequently, near objects look clear, but far ones appear blurry.
In farsightedness or Hyperopia, distant objects appear clearly compared to closer ones. It may take a lot of work to focus on near things. Farsightedness is normal in childhood as most children’s eyes develop gradually. As they grow up, they become less farsighted, but Myopia becomes more evident. Nearsightedness becomes worse as a child gets into their adolescence.
Symptoms of Myopia in Children
Curious about what to look for in your child? Below are signs and symptoms of Myopia in children:
Closing one eye or squinting to read
Sitting very close to the television
Holding tablets or books close to their face
Myopia Control in Children
Although there is no cure for myopia, technology has made huge advances in Myopia Management! Myopia control is possible through technologies like CooperVision’s MiSight® and Orthokeratology (OrthoK) which help reduce its severity.
MiSight® lenses offer a soft contact program for children ages 8-12 years old, where lenses are worn daily, and you work with a certified technician for the duration of the program. It is the first and only FDA-approved program for Myopia Management in children.
On the other hand, OrthoK can be used by children and adults. The doctor designs reshaping contact lenses that fit your eyes and works by wearing them at night to reshape the cornea. When removed in the morning, users have clear sight for the rest of the day without prescription glasses or contact lenses.
Ways to Prevent Myopia
The only way to prevent Myopia is by having annual eye exams. Doing so can help get an early diagnosis. Dr. Day has been treating myopic patients for over 20 years and is excited about the focus on Myopia Management and revolutionary treatments that are now available.
For more about Myopia in children, please contact our experienced team at East Main Vision Clinic by calling (253) 780-0700 today.