If you are frustrated with the limitations of wearing glasses or contact lenses, you may think that you have no choice but to rely on prescription eyewear. Fortunately, you’d be wrong. There is a non-surgical solution which can enable you to see with clarity and precision for your waking hours without the need for glasses or contact lenses. It is known as Orthokeratology, or Ortho-K.
What is Ortho-K?
Ortho-K, or orthokeratology to give it it’s full name, is a variety of non-surgical therapy that is highly successful in treating refractive eye problems including myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and even astigmatism. This revolutionary solution uses specially designed contact lenses that you wear while you sleep. Simply pop the lenses in at bedtime, wear them throughout the night and when you wake in the morning, you will be able to enjoy clear, natural vision without the need for glasses or contact lenses for the duration of the day.
How does Ortho-K work?
Refractive eye errors occur when the light that enters the eye is refracted incorrectly due to an abnormal curvature of the cornea. In order to be able to see clearly, the cornea, which is the transparent layer covering your pupil and iris, must be perfectly spherical. However, in patients suffering from myopia or hyperopia, the cornea may be flatter, thinner, steeper or thicker than is considered ideal. Patients with astigmatism are found to have corneas that are shaped like a football rather than a soccer ball. The result? Blurred vision that requires you to wear lenses to correct it.
Ortho-K improves your vision by reshaping your eyes using specially designed contact lenses that you wear while you sleep. The process is virtually painless and should not interrupt your sleep. The lenses are designed using cutting edge mapping technology known as topography. This makes a digital map of your eye with unrivalled accuracy and uses it to manufacture each lens from highly breathable material. This ensures that your eye can breathe overnight while you sleep, preventing dry eye and other ocular health problems associated with wearing contact lenses overnight.
When you wear your custom-created lens, the curves reshape the cornea while the tear film underneath continuously flows, sculpting the shape so that the cornea is more spherical, and light can be refracted correctly.
How long does it take for Ortho-K to work?
Exactly how long it will take for Ortho-K to work varies between patients. Some may find that their vision is significantly improved after just one night wearing the Ortho-K lenses, while others may need to wear them for up to 4 weeks for there to be enough change in their vision for them to see clearly without glasses or contacts. For maximum results it is recommended that you wear your Ortho-K lenses every night.
Can Ortho-K be worn by children?
The number of children being diagnosed with myopia (nearsightedness) has risen dramatically during the last few decades, attributed in part to the increased use in screens for technology and more time spent indoors. Studies have shown that Ortho-K lenses can be beneficial in helping to slow the progression of myopia in childhood, enabling your kids to see clearly for longer and protecting their future vision.
If you are interested in finding out more about Ortho-K lenses, our highly experienced team of ocular specialists would be delighted to answer your questions. Alternatively, make a consultation appointment to discuss your or your child’s candidacy for Ortho-K today. Please call our office in Puyallup, Washington for more information.