Myopia Control Clinic for children now open
July 2015 – Myopia Control Clinic for children now open
In the summer of 2015, after a few years of dabbling in myopia control, we officially launched our dedicated Myopia Control Clinic, the aim of which is to decrease the risk of development or progression (worsening) of myopia. You may wish to have your myopia or your child’s myopia evaluated and profiled if:
- You/your child has normal vision but is at risk of developing myopia, or
- You/your child is already myopic (short-sighted) and at risk of further myopia progression
Myopia (short-sightedness) is where the eyeball is too long or too powerful. This results in blurred distance vision however vision for close objects is clear within a certain range of distances
Please watch the video for more information about myopia.
Why do we need to control myopia?
Generally once an individual becomes myopia (short-sighted) it tends to worsen over time. Higher levels of myopia are associated with higher risks of eye diseases such as glaucoma, retinal detachment and cataract later in life.
What causes myopia development and progression?
A variety of factors contribute to the likelihood of developing myopia and its potential progression. Genetics, each individual’s characteristics and environment are all contributing factors. The risk profile is shown below.
GENETICS: Family History of Myopia
INDIVIDUAL CHARACTERISTICS: Visual Acuity – current distance vision
ENVIRONMENT: Time Spent Outside (daylight hours, per day)
LIFESTYLE: Time Spent doing close vision tasks (per day, not including school time*)*This includes reading, homework, handheld games, drawing, computer work.
Whilst environmental risks factors are unlikely to affect the choice of management pathway, they are modifiable and should be considered and optimised if possible to minimise myopia risk. Tips for modifying environmental risk factors:
(1) Spend time outside every day.
It is believed the brightness of natural sunlight is beneficial rather than UV light; therefore it is important to take sun protection precautions in the form of sunglasses and sunscreen.
(2) Take regular breaks from close work.
Look away for a minute or so to change your focus, or change your task every 30-60 minutes to alter the demand on your visual system.
(3) Try to limit near tasks (after school/work) to 2 hours per day
This also includes leisure time – ensure it is not primarily spent on handheld digital devices or other close vision tasks like reading and drawing. On the weekends, ensure a balance between inside and outside time, and increase natural lighting.
How do I stop or slow the progression if I am already myopic?
While in developing countries, uncorrected myopia can be a serious disability, in western developed countries it is mostly regarded as an inconvenience, easily corrected by spectacles or contact lenses and dismissed. However, if left to progress, it is well known that pathological myopia can lead to serious eye conditions and even blindness. As a result on-going global research has led to the emergence of Myopia Control, an area of science dedicated to slowing down or stopping the progression of myopia in children and young adults. A variety of strategies have been researched and tested with the aim of slowing myopia worsening. Below is a summary of results of over 30 research papers on myopia control published up to and including the end of 2014.
|Type of vision correction||Effect on slowing myopic progression|
|Normal glasses and standard contact lenses||0-5%|
|Progressive/bifocal lenses (with reading power)||12-55%|
|Myovision (special design spectacle lenses)||0-30%|
|Multifocal soft contact lenses||29-45%|
|Orthokeratology/CRT (special design rigid contact lenses)||32-100%|
|Atropine (daily eye drops to paralyse focus)||30-77%, reducing to 30% after cessation.
Side effects include significant glare sensitivity and constant requirement for reading glasses.
For more information on Myopia Control please watch the video above.
If you wish to arrange a myopia control consultation please call the practice on 0141 943 3300 or alternatively use the link opposite to book an appointment online using our live web diary.