Night lenses are proven to control Myopia (short sight) in young people and children.
Myopia, casually called “Short sight”, is a condition that, unknown to many, increases sight threatening conditions such as retinal detachments and diseases like glaucoma and myopic macular degeneration. Treat these seriously. The higher the Myopia, the higher the risk of diseases.
Myopia leads to the eye growing longer, making the retina more likely to degenerate. If we think of the eye like a camera, the retina is the film, capturing what we see. If the retina becomes damaged this can lead to sight loss that cannot be corrected with spectacles or surgery. In the worst case it can lead to partial sight or blindness.
The good news is that the amount of Myopia can now be reduced in children. The chart below shows how EARLY CONTROL should help your child see better over their lifetime, reducing their risk of eye disease later on in life.
TRAFFIC LIGHTS & YOUR CHILD (on the chart above)
RED – High myopia. Vital to get early control
AMBER – Moderate myopia. Green zone possible
GREEN – This is where we’re aiming for
AN ‘EYE TEST’ ASSESSES THE HEALTH OF THE EYE
Eye tests are not a ‘test for glasses’. They test eye health. Our children are predicted to live until they are 90+ so their eyes need to last a long time! The RED ZONE means poorer eye health – when they get older they may struggle to see the top line of the chart without correction, may be unable to drive and will have a higher risk of eye disease. Taking early action now to keep them in the GREEN or the AMBER will help them later in life. Every Dioptre counts. Low myopia now = better later.
MYOPIA CONTROL | STARTING EARLY VS STARTING LATE
Starting Night Lenses early (age 9) was the best thing I ever did for my sons
As a dad starting early to help my boys see well and decrease their risk of eye disease later in life was the best thing I ever did. As a clinician myopia control in youngsters is quite simply one of the most rewarding things I do”
JAIMIN PATEL, OPTOMETRIST (& DAD)
I’m gutted we didn’t start earlier (we started aged 13)
Tom’s son (being taught to surf by Tom below) was in the RED ZONE but control with night lenses from the aged of 13 means he is is now stablised and heading into the AMBER ZONE. He will never reach the GREEN ZONE. No early intervention means he has a 40% greater chance of eye disease (Glaucoma and Myopic Macular Degeneration) later on in life than Jaimin’s son above.
“Benjamin is short sighted”
This is what the optician said. My wife and I thought nothing of it. Short sight is harmless right? Benjamin was 8. Aged 9-13 his sight crashed down to -3.75 & -4.00. When his glasses fell off he couldn’t see anything. A keen surfer he could no longer see the waves. He stopped playing sport and lost confidence. It broke our hearts.
We were finally told that ‘Short sight’ was a colloquial name for the medical condition ‘myopia’ and were shocked to discover the worse his short sight (Myopia) got, the higher his risks were of life affecting eye disease later on in life! Why had no one told us this before??
When he was 14 he was fitted with a myopia control device. Stable for 2 years now, he’s RED going into AMBER (upper dotted line). He’s now 16, a surfer, happy, confident – the transformation was incredible!
I’m gutted that we didn’t start earlier, to give him better sight and a better life. Jaimin’s son (above) was very similar to Benjamin. He started aged 9, Benjamin 5 years later at 14. When they get older Jaimin’s lad will be able to see the 4th or 5th line down on the chart without any assistance, almost the legal driving limit, and will have a low risk of eye disease. Benjamin will only see the top line and will have a moderate risk of eye disease. That’s what starting 5 year’s too late means to him long term.
That said, thankfully we did start, otherwise he wouldn’t be able to see the chart at all when he’s older, would probably need laser eye surgery and would have a very high risk of eye disease.
I wish this advice had been around then. My message to parents reading this – take it seriously and start myopia control early!
TOM GRIFFITHS, DAD
If you’d like to find out more about Myopia in children, Myopia Progression and Myopia Control head to myopiacontrolawareness.org, a non-commercial industry collaboration site set up to ensure parents ask their optician the right questions and receive the right answers, to help their children have the best sight and a better life.