Myopia (“nearsightedness”) refers to the need for glasses and/or contact lenses to make distance vision clear. Someone who is myopic has a natural NEAR focal point. This occurs because the size of the eye – the axial length, is too long relative to the focusing power of the eye.
What is Myopia Management?
Myopia management refers to methods to treat progressive myopia. Often, children between ages 5-16, who need to start wearing glasses to help their distance vision, experience worsening vision year after year, requiring stronger visual correction with glasses and contact lenses. The goal of myopia management is to slow down or halt this progression. Why would we want to slow down this change? Because the higher the glasses prescription needed, the closer in the natural focal point becomes. This can require full-time glasses wear. Higher amounts of myopia are also associated with increasing risks of glaucoma, macular degeneration, and retinal detachment. Higher amounts of myopia can also limit the ability to correct vision with surgeries like LASIK in adulthood.
Myopia Management Methods
Researchers and clinicians are continuing to work at understanding the best methods of myopia management. Currently, we know that children who are not yet myopic show benefits from time spent outdoors. Children who are already myopic can benefit from certain designs of contact lenses, or the use of diluted dilation drops.
Soft Multifocal Contact Lenses
- Soft, multifocal contact lenses are worn daily and work by putting the needed prescription at the center of the visual correction, with a blurred periphery in order to give the retina a stimulus to slow/stop the growth.
MiSight – Brilliant Futures Program
- MiSight is the first and only FDA-approved soft contact lens designed to slow the progression of myopia in children age 8-12. Over three years, MiSight reduced myopia progression by 59%, versus a single vision 1 day lens. MiSight helps slow the elongation of the eye and myopia progression, while fully correcting refractive error.
- The Brilliant Futures program is designed to fit busy lifestyles and offer you the support needed to succeed. The program includes an annual supply of MiSight 1 day daily disposable lenses, free shipping and free returns, hassle free exchanges if prescription changes, access to online support tools, and a mobile app with education resources and appointment reminders.
Ortho K (Orthokeratology)
- Ortho K contact lenses give the same visual effect, but these are hard contacts or “RGPs” and used for overnight wear. They reshape the cornea so that no contact lenses or glasses have to be worn during the daytime.
Atropine Eye Drops
- Once daily use of low dose atropine eye drops (dilation drops) has been shown to slow myopia progression by helping to relax the intraocular muscle responsible for focusing.
Which Myopia Control Method is Right for My Child?
Myopia management is unique to the individual. The best way to determine which method is right for your child and your lifestyle is to schedule a complimentary consult with one of our doctors who specialize in myopia management or add a consult to your child’s yearly eye exam.