Myopia Management For Kids
Myopia is a condition where the overall length of the eye is longer than average (increased axial length).
A common symptom of increased axial length is “near sightedness” where a child may see well up close but not well in the distance. Childhood myopia is concerning because axial length and distance blur will increase without the proper intervention. Over the past decade, mountains of research have shown detecting and treating Myopia with an optometrist trained in myopia management EARLY ON gives your child the best prognosis in adulthood.
The World Health Organization has reported that Myopia is reaching epidemic proportions. The WHO goes on to report that Myopia not only results in vision impairment but can lead to forms of glaucoma, retinal problems and permanent, uncorrectable vision loss.
In the USA 42% of the population has myopia. Between the 1970s and 2000s there has been a 66% increase in Myopia. Myopia can arise for many reasons. If both parents are nearsighted, there is a very good chance their children will be nearsighted as well. Myopia can have a genetic link.
The most recent research has show that there are a number of treatments beyond eyeglasses which can help young children see their best and REDUCE the amount of myopia that they will develop in their lifetime.
For regular updates about Myopia Management and how it can impact your child, read our Myopia blog.
- An accurate pair of prescription glasses – Annual exams are advised at a minimum.
- BiFocal Eyeglasses have been shown to reduce the progression of myopia.
- BiFocal Contact lenses can help as well.
- Orthokeratology with a trained specialist can reduce or eliminate a dependance on eyeglasses without surgery.
- Low dose Atropine eyedrops are effective in the right patient.
What can parents/guardians do NOW to help their children?
- A complete eye exam with dilation between Kindergarten and First grade. Even if the child has no symptoms. Most kids will not know that they need glasses.
- If Eyeglasses are prescribed, wear them! Get annual eye exams to be sure the prescription is current.
- DRAMATICALLY Reduce screen time & device time.
- Get Outside! Between 1 and 1.5 hours Outside Playing everyday can reduce a child’s risk of developing myopia by 50%
Tacoma Eye at Westgate is a Treehouse eyes provider. Treehouse Eyes is the national leader in Myopia Treatment. Learn more here about Why Myopia Matters.
Early Myopia intervention can help your child now and reduce their eye health risks. We offer non-surgical treatments proven to help your child in partnership with Treehouse Eyes
Researchers believe that the environment kids grow up in today, with too many close distance activities (like reading and device use) and lack of outdoor play is contributing to the rapid increase in childhood myopia. While glasses and contact lenses compensate for a child’s blurry distance vision, they don’t stop your child’s vision from continuing to deteriorate. As children grow, myopia often develops as they reach school age and, untreated, progresses into the late teens. Hear other kids and parents share why myopia treatment is so important here”
The Danger of Myopia
Studies now show there is more to worry about with myopic eyes than the inconvenience of ever-thickening glasses. Scientific evidence has proven that myopic patients are more vulnerable to a range of sight-threatening diseases and complications.
Patients with mild myopia have a four-fold increase in the risk of retinal detachment. For those with moderate to severe myopia, the risk increases ten times. One study concluded that more than 50 percent of retinal detachments not related to trauma are associated with myopia. Other myopia risks include glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration.
Myopia can now be treated
The dangers of myopia, in conjunction with the normal challenges of poor vision, mean it is important for parents of myopic children to treat the condition as part of your child’s eye health. The goal of myopia management is to slow or even stop the progression of myopia and reduce its impact on your child’s life. The younger myopia management begins, the more effective the treatment.
We are excited at Tacoma Eye at Westgate to announce the launch of our children’s myopia management service in partnership with Treehouse Eyes®, the country’s leading myopia management brand. This revolutionary system, designed to treat your child’s myopia and significantly reduce the threat of more serious eye diseases, is one of the most important innovations since glasses were first prescribed hundreds of years ago!
Schedule an appointment today and one of our doctors will evaluate your child’s vision and make a customized treatment plan to slow or even stop myopia from progressing.
How Does it Work?
Treehouse Eyes doctors use state-of-the-art equipment to develop a personalized treatment plan for your child. Our non-invasive treatments include customized contact lenses and special prescription eye drops. Some of our treatments will even allow your child to see clearly without glasses or contact lenses all day. Data from children using our patent-pending Treehouse Vision System® treatment plan shows a 78% decrease in the progression of their myopia vs. no treatment. At your initial consultation, your Treehouse Eyes doctor will determine the treatment that will work best for your child.