Understanding myopia, your child’s risk, and how we help slow the progression while there’s still time
What is myopia, and is my child at risk?
Myopia, or nearsightedness, is an abnormal elongation (lengthening) of the eye, which causes blurred distance vision. This can put your child at a higher risk for more severe eye diseases in adulthood and create immediate learning challenges today. Detecting and treating myopia at an early age is essential in slowing the progression of this disease. It can also help lower the risk of glaucoma, macular degeneration, retinal detachment, cataracts, and blindness. Below we will explain the causes of myopia, your treatment options, and how we partner with you to provide a brighter future for your child’s vision and ocular health.
What causes myopia?
Myopia has doubled in U.S. children since the 1990s. Listed below are some of the main factors contributing to this incline.
- Parents with Myopia. There is a 25% chance children will develop myopia if one or more parents are myopic. This number increases to 50% if both parents are myopic.
- Increased Screen Time. Most children spend a significant amount of time on devices between school and home. Children who spend 7+ hours a week triple their risk for developing myopia.
- Less Time Outdoors. The eye’s focusing system can rest when looking at objects further than 20 feet away; this naturally occurs when children spend more time outdoors. Studies also show a deficiency in natural sunlight exposure could contribute to the recent myopia increase.
How do I know if my child has myopia?
Is your child squinting, rubbing their eyes frequently, complaining of headaches, or asking to move closer to the board at school? These are all potential signs and symptoms of myopia(nearsightedness).
Myopia is primarily diagnosed in school-aged children, but standard school screenings can miss 75% of children with vision impairment. Over 14 million children in the U.S. suffer from nearsightedness, and statistics show that over 80% of a child’s learning occurs through the eyes. Scheduling your child for a Comprehensive Eye Exam is the first step towards detecting serious eye conditions early on.
What can I do?
At Spectrum Eye Care, we strive to empower you with the tools and quality care you need to take control of your child’s eye health. Our highly-trained optometrists work with cutting-edge technology and personalized care to provide the best treatment for this disease.
It is imperative to catch and treat myopia early. A one diopter increase in your child’s prescription raises their likelihood of developing myopic macular degeneration, or vision loss, by 67%. In comparison, a one diopter decrease in your child’s prescription reduces this likelihood by 40%.
We diagnose and closely monitor the indicators of these changes to provide you with the very best care. Your child’s treatment options are specifically tailored to meet their unique needs. Our recommendations could include specialized eyeglasses, Ortho-Keratology (corneal molds), daily multifocal contact lenses, and suggestions for screen time and outdoor play.
Call us today to schedule your child’s Comprehensive Eye Exam and set them up for a healthier future!
Family Eye Care in South Charlotte, Uptown Charlotte , Mooresville NC & Charlotte South End
South Charlotte: 704.543.9000 | Uptown: 704.334.4444 | Mooresville: 704.817.4600 | Charlotte South End: 704.585.8595