While myopia is partly genetic, research now points to environmental factors as a contributor to this epidemic. More screen time and less outdoor time could be affecting the development of childrens' eyes during these critical years of growth.
Although some children's myopia progresses at an earlier age than others, myopia increases typically occur between 7-18 years of age. Myopia is more than an inconvenience that causes children to need stronger glasses each year. It is a disease that may continue progressing into adulthood and is associated with an increased risk of eye diseases such as:
Typically, the higher the myopia, the greater the risk of developing these conditions. However, research now indicates that any amount of myopia increases the risk of vision-threatening eye problems in later life.
The number of individuals with myopia is rapidly increasing worldwide. It is predicted that 50 % of the population will be myopic by the year 2050.
(World Health Organization, 2015)
Until recently, doctors primarily focused on correcting their patient's myopia with glasses and/or contact lenses. However, simply correcting a patient's myopia does not slow the progression nor minimize their risk of developing potentially sight-threatening eye diseases.
Contact us to see if your child is a good candidate for myopia management.
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The Myopia Management Service provides advanced, evidence-based optical treatments for children who became nearsighted before age 10 and/or are progressing myopes. Children typically become myopic in their early school years and experience increases in their prescription until they reach early adulthood. It is during this time of rapid myopic progression that treatments offered by the Myopia Management Service will have the maximum impact.
The Myopia Management Service is the first full scope-of-care myopia management service of its kind in Texas.
If you were highly myopic as a child, chances are you've thought about whether your child (or children) would also be affected. Instead of simply correcting their myopia with glasses and/or contact lenses, you now have the option to treat their myopia and slow its progression.
If you have any questions or would like more information about our service you can contact us the following ways:
Researchers at the University of Houston College of Optometry are world-leaders on the topic of myopia control. The most cutting-edge research shows that refractive error development is strongly influenced by visual experience. The mechanisms responsible for eye growth are within the eye, and act in localized areas. Current optical corrections, including regular glasses and contact lenses, place the central image at the plane of the retina and as a result central vision is clear. However, with conventional glasses and contact lenses, the peripheral image is focused behind the plane of the retina. Images focused behind the plane of the retina stimulate elongation as local mechanisms work to increase the length of the eye so that the peripheral retina captures the peripheral image. Specialty optical designs preserve clear central imagery, and pull the peripheral imagery forward onto or in front of the plane of the retina. When the peripheral image is in front of the retina, the stimulus is to stop eye growth. This, in essence, puts the breaks on myopic progression and is the strategy specialty optical designs are based on.