At Horvath Vision Care Northwoods, we are taking measures to slow down the progression of myopia in our young patients through research-based myopia control techniques.
Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a vision condition that occurs when the eye grows too long and makes the far away distance vision blurry while near vision stays in clear focus. The blurred vision can be corrected with glasses or contact lenses and is generally a mild inconvenience. However, when the amount of myopia becomes high, the risk of sight-threatening complications such as a retinal detachment or macular degeneration can greatly increase as you get older.
Myopia progression occurs as the child grows and their eyeballs lengthen. The child’s eyes can become larger and longer creating the need for stronger and stronger eyeglasses. Over the last decade, myopia has been identified as an epidemic throughout the world. Researchers predict that half of the world’s population will be nearsighted by the year 2050! The causes are thought to be stemming from several factors including a family history of myopia, decreased exposure to sunlight throughout childhood, increased time spent on near work and electronics, and East Asian descent. In addition to the loss of distance vision, there are increased eye health risks that present as a result of having eyes that are too long. These risks include sight-threatening conditions such as glaucoma and retinal detachments.
Myopia onset generally occurs around age 8 and progresses throughout the teenage years. The earlier age of onset, the more myopic a child is projected to be.
There is no cure available for myopia and until recently, optometrists have only been able to provide a stronger and stronger vision correction prescription (via glasses or contact lenses) as the nearsightedness worsens. Fortunately, there are now treatment options available that have been proven to slow increasing myopia. These treatments include nightly eye drops and specialty contact lenses. They are thought to work by relaxing and alleviating the eyestrain and stress that occurs on structures within the eye while focusing.
Dr. Leach and Dr. Lugar at Horvath Vision Care Northwoods now offer these cutting-edge treatments for your myopic children, whether they are a newly diagnosed myope or already have a significant amount of prescription. An initial hour-long evaluation with specialized testing and a thorough discussion with our optometrists will help to determine which treatment modality works best for your child. The treatment plan includes several follow-up visits throughout the year where the doctor will be evaluating, measuring and tailoring the myopia treatment to your child’s eyes based on their treatment response.
We are excited to offer this specialized and revolutionary eye care option at Horvath Vision Care Northwoods! Not only will myopia control cause your child to be less dependent on their glasses and contacts due to the need for a milder prescription, but most importantly, they are at less risk for developing sight-threatening eye diseases at an older age.
Invest in the health of your child’s eyes today and call us for a myopia management consultation!