Nearsightedness, also known as myopia, is one of the most common vision conditions affecting approximately 30+% of people in the United States. In fact, it is estimated that 20-25 million children have Myopia in the United States alone. With nearsightedness, objects up close are seen clearly while distant objects appear blurry or out of focus. This results when the eye grows too long from front to back measured by the axial length of the eye. The elongation of the eyeball causes light rays to focus incorrectly on the retina resulting in blurry distance vision. While nearsightedness cannot be cured, there are various options for slowing or stopping the progression of myopia (nearsightedness).
What Causes Nearsightedness?
Nearsightedness occurs when the eyeball grows longer than normal from front to back. This causes the light entering the eye to focus in front of the retina rather than directly on it. This results in blurred distance vision, while near vision remains unaffected. Several factors contribute to the risk of developing nearsightedness, such as:
Signs and Symptoms
The primary symptom of nearsightedness is blurred distance vision. When looking at distant objects like road signs, movies, whiteboards, or presentations, it can be difficult to see when nearsighted. This forces the eyes to strain and overwork to bring images into focus. As a result, individuals with uncorrected nearsightedness may experience:
Typically, both eyes are affected, though not always to the same degree. The blurry distance vision worsens gradually over time in most cases.
Impacts of Uncorrected Nearsightedness
Allowing nearsightedness (myopia) to remain untreated can lead to several problems for your child. Myopia usually progresses over time, resulting in greater blur and dependence on treatment or correction as you age. Constant squinting and eye effort add to fatigue and discomfort, and unclear vision makes reading and seeing whiteboards at school difficult.
There is also evidence that myopia can have social implications, such as extracurricular activities that require distance vision become challenging. Not to mention many career options that have vision requirements. However, all these issues don’t compare to the increased risk of severe eye conditions like Glaucoma, cataracts, and the potential for retinal detachments. The severity of nearsightedness (myopia) typically stabilizes by adulthood. However, getting your child’s vision treated early provides significant benefits for eye health, visual development, and quality of life.
Treatment Options for Nearsightedness
While nearsightedness itself cannot be reversed or cured, there are effective treatment options for slowing or stopping the progression of myopia. The best option will depend on the severity of nearsightedness, lifestyle needs, age, and overall eye health of your child - all of which are taken into account when getting treatment with a Treehouse Eyes provider.
Keeping Nearsightedness (Myopia) Under Control
Below are some helpful tips you can start using right now to help slow the progression of your child’s nearsightedness.
The Importance of Eye Exams
Nearsightedness develops gradually over time but can accelerate quickly if not monitored. Routine eye exams allow early detection and treatment. Annual comprehensive exams are recommended for:
Let Treehouse Eyes Help Your Child Manage Myopia
Treehouse Eyes’ doctors use modern equipment to develop personalized treatment plans for your child. Our treatment plans include special prescription eye drops and customized daytime and overnight contact lenses. Treehouse Eyes doctors determine which treatment plan works the best for your child at your initial consultation. Schedule a consultation now to find out more.
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