Eyecare for Children

Eye examinations for children under 16 are paid for by the NHS and if any eyewear is
required, then they are also eligible for an optical voucher that can be used to cover the cost
of the eyewear.

Myopia Control

Whilst there is no cure for myopia, we have come a long way to understanding how it develops. This has led the way to strategies that help slow the progression significantly.

Eye tests for Children

Clear vision plays a vital role in a child’s overall development and learning. Unfortunately, children may not always be aware of any vision problems that hinder their full potential. If focusing errors go unnoticed in the early stages, it can result in reduced vision in one or both eyes that cannot be fully corrected through spectacles, contact lenses, or eye surgery.

It’s important to note that assessing a child’s eyes does not require them to read or communicate verbally. We have a variety of techniques and equipment at our disposal to determine if there are any visual difficulties or underlying issues.

For children under 16, eye examinations are covered by the NHS. Additionally, if eyewear is needed, they are eligible for an optical voucher that can be used to help cover the cost.

Ensuring the visual well-being of children is a priority, and we are dedicated to providing comprehensive eye care services to support their optimal development and learning. Don’t hesitate to bring your child in for an examination, as early detection and intervention can make a significant difference in their visual health.

Myopia is on the rise

What is Myopia?

Myopia, commonly known as short-sightedness, occurs when distant objects like TV screens, signs, school boards, and even faces appear blurred. This condition arises when the eyeball grows longer from front to back, causing light rays to focus in front of the retina rather than directly on it. As a result, distant objects appear blurry and out of focus. Myopia is typically noticed during the primary school years and may progress as the eyeball continues to elongate during the child’s growth phase.

The prevalence of myopia is increasing globally. Currently, approximately 30% of the world’s population has myopia, and it is projected to rise to 50% by 2050. Additionally, about 10% of the population is expected to develop high myopia.

Understanding the prevalence and impact of myopia is crucial, as it helps emphasise the importance of regular eye examinations and appropriate management strategies. By addressing myopia at an early stage, we can effectively support children’s visual well-being and provide the necessary interventions to minimise its progression.

What Causes Myopia?

Myopia typically emerges during childhood and tends to be more prevalent among children whose parents have the condition, although this is not always the case. Various factors are believed to contribute to the development of myopia, including prolonged engagement in close-range visual tasks such as smartphone, tablet, and computer use. Additionally, spending excessive time indoors is considered a contributing factor.

What Risk Factors Are Associated with Myopia?

Managing myopia requires ongoing eye care, including regular eye examinations and the use of vision correction methods. The aim of controlling or slowing down the progression of myopia is crucial due to the increased risk associated with higher levels of myopia. Individuals with high myopic prescriptions face a greater likelihood of developing eye conditions like retinal detachment, myopic maculopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts. These conditions can lead to permanent vision loss if left untreated. By actively addressing myopia and monitoring its progression, we can minimise the potential risks and safeguard long-term visual health.

How is Myopia Corrected?

While there is currently no cure for myopia, our goal is to minimise or stop its progression. Through regular eye examinations and the utilisation of specialised myopia management products, we can effectively slow down the advancement of the condition. These products have undergone extensive testing, and the results have demonstrated that with consistent use, myopic progression can be reduced by up to 60%. By implementing these strategies, we can actively intervene and help maintain better long-term vision for individuals with myopia.

Stellest and MiYOSMART (Spectacle Lenses)

Stellest lenses, a cutting-edge innovation, feature a distinct design comprising a central clear zone encompassed by treatment zones. These treatment zones consist of numerous small defocus segments or lenslets, evenly spread across the lens, generating a peripheral retinal defocus. This peripheral retinal defocus signal plays a crucial role in mitigating the elongation of the eyeball, thereby aiding in the reduction of myopic progression. Clinical trials have demonstrated remarkable outcomes, revealing that these lenses can slow the progression of myopia by up to 60%.

Catering specifically to children, these lenses are crafted from lightweight polycarbonate material, ensuring durability and high impact resistance. Their design takes into account the active lifestyle of children, offering a reliable solution to address myopia while prioritising comfort and safety.

MiSight® Contact Lenses

MiSight® contact lenses, developed by CooperVision, are a type of soft, daily disposable contact lens. They incorporate an innovative ActivControl® technology that encompasses both correction and treatment zones.

The correction zones in the lenses ensure clear vision by providing the necessary vision correction. Meanwhile, the treatment zones offer myopic defocus, which helps control the axial elongation of the eye.

For optimal results, it is recommended to wear these lenses for at least six days per week. Through extensive testing over a three-year trial period, these lenses have been proven to effectively reduce myopia by up to 59%. This makes them a reliable and evidence-based option for managing myopia.

How else can you help your child?

To promote your child’s eye health, there are several beneficial lifestyle changes they can adopt:

1.Encourage increased outdoor activities and limit screen time whenever feasible.

2.When reading books or using digital devices, suggest holding them at a distance of more than 30cm from their eyes.

3.Advise taking regular breaks from near work every 30 minutes, whenever possible.

4.Regular eye examinations are crucial for everyone and play a vital role in monitoring the progression of myopia.

If you would like to learn more about myopia management for your children or have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Leith Opticians. Our team is here to provide you with the information and support you need.