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How Do I Prevent My Child’s Myopia From Becoming Worse?

child reading 640×350If you’re a parent of a child who is nearsighted, you know that myopia (nearsightedness) can sometimes be challenging. What many parents don’t know is that rapidly progressing myopia is more than just a hassle — it can harm your child’s eye health. Children with rapidly progressing myopia are far more likely to develop potentially sight-threatening eye diseases such as glaucoma, cataracts, and macular degeneration later in life.

Fortunately, Dr. Roth at Family Eye Care, can help slow the progression of your child’s myopia with a customized myopia management program. Understanding what causes myopia to worsen and what can be done to slow it down can help safeguard your child’s vision.

What Causes Myopia to Progress?

Both nature (genetics) and nurture (how we use the visual system) play a role in myopia development. Parents who are nearsighted, are more likely to have a child who is nearsighted.

There are many factors that produce myopia, but each person handles visual stress differently.  Some factors are a visual system that over focuses,  especially at near, such as when reading.  Another factor is where the eyes point.  If they tend to point in too much, that is also a factor.  Those who avoid reading, usually don't become as nearsighted, but in our world that is so computer and screen based, and the importance of reading and learning to advance in school and at work, that is impractical.  There are answers to answer the myopia-progression question.  

How Can I Prevent Myopia From Becoming Worse?

As stated above, avoidance of reading and working on computer is not a practical answer.  Some doctors may advocate "time in the sunshine".  The only reason that works is because when someone is in the sun, they are usually not reading.  It is not the sun that is preventing the myopia, but rather the fact that the individual is not doing near work. 

How Can an Eye Doctor help with Myopia Management ?

Doctors that manage Myopia progression do more than prescribe regular compensating eyeglass lenses.  There are methods that can help control its progression.

Current treatments include:

  1. visoin thearpy which address the underlying reason that the myopia is progresing
  2. Orthokeratology (“ortho-k”) special molding lenses that are worn at night while sleeping 
  3. Special bifocal eyeglass
  4. Special Myopia control contact lenses
  5. Atropine

We begin with a comprehensive eye exam.  Together with Dr. Roth, we can determine the most appropriate treatment plan for your child.  Annual eye examinations are needed for all children, but especially for children that are progressing in myopia.  Not all optometrists or ophthalmologists provide myopia management.

 

 

Dr. Roth and Dr. Tiomno, and the friendly staff at family Eye Care in Old Bridge, can answer your questions on Myopia Management. We look forward to hearing from you and helping you.

Family Eye Care in Old Bridge serves patients from Aberdeen, East Brunswick, Manalapan, Matawan, Marlboro, Monroe, Parlin. Sayreville, South Amboy, South River, Spotswood, Lawrence Harbor, Cliffwood Beach, and throughout New Jersey. 

 


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