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. However, children often remain unaware of any underlying issues with their eyesight, preventing them from reaching their full visual potential. If focusing errors go undetected at an early stage, it can lead to reduced vision in one or both eyes that cannot be fully corrected with glasses, contact lenses, or eye surgery.

At our practice, we can examine children’s eyes even if they cannot read or speak yet. We employ a variety of techniques and equipment to assess their vision and identify any potential problems or visual difficulties.

It’s important to note that eye examinations for children under 16 are covered by the NHS. Additionally, if eyewear is required, they are eligible for an optical voucher that can help cover the costs.

Prioritise your child’s visual health and ensure they have the best opportunity for optimal development. Schedule an eye examination with us, knowing that their well-being is supported by the NHS and available optical vouchers for any necessary eyewear.

Myopia is on the rise

What is Myopia?

Myopia, also known as short-sightedness, is a condition where distant objects such as TV screens, signs, school boards, and faces appear blurry. This occurs because the eyeball grows longer from front to back, resulting in an elongated shape. As a result, light rays focus in front of the retina instead of directly on it, causing distant objects to appear blurred and out of focus. Myopia is commonly noticed during the primary school years and can progress as the eyeball continues to elongate during a child’s growth.

The prevalence of myopia is increasing worldwide. Currently, approximately 30% of the global population is affected by myopia, and this number is projected to rise to 50% by 2050. Additionally, it is expected that 10% of the population will develop high myopia. These statistics highlight the growing occurrence of myopia and its significance as a global vision concern.

What Causes Myopia?

Myopia typically develops during childhood and is more prevalent in children who have parents with myopia, although this is not always the determining factor. Other factors that are believed to contribute to the development of myopia include prolonged engagement in close-up visual tasks such as smartphone, tablet, and computer use. Additionally, spending excessive time indoors has also been associated with an increased risk of myopia.

What Risk Factors Are Associated with Myopia?

To ensure lifelong eye health, individuals who develop myopia require regular eye examinations and ongoing vision correction. It is important to consider interventions to reduce or slow down the progression of myopia due to the increased risks associated with higher myopic prescriptions. Those with high myopia have a greater likelihood of developing eye conditions like retinal detachment, myopic maculopathy, glaucoma, and cataracts, which can potentially result in irreversible vision loss. By addressing myopia progression, we aim to mitigate these risks and safeguard long-term visual well-being.

How is Myopia Corrected?

While there is currently no cure for myopia, our focus is on reducing or stopping its progression. Through regular eye examinations and the utilisation of specialised myopia management products, we can effectively slow down the advancement of this condition. These products have undergone rigorous testing, and studies have demonstrated that with consistent use, they can decrease myopic progression by up to 60%. By implementing these strategies, we strive to provide effective measures for managing myopia and promoting better long-term eye health.

Stellest and MiYOSMART (Spectacle Lenses)

Introducing the groundbreaking Stellest and MiYOSMART spectacle lenses, which feature an innovative design consisting of a clear central zone surrounded by treatment zones. These treatment zones incorporate numerous small defocus segments or lenslets that are evenly distributed across the lens, creating a peripheral retinal defocus. This peripheral retinal defocus signal plays a pivotal role in reducing the elongation of the eyeball and effectively slowing down the progression of myopia. Clinical trials have yielded remarkable results, demonstrating a reduction in myopic progression of up to 60%.

These lenses are specifically crafted with children in mind, utilising lightweight polycarbonate material. This ensures durability and impact resistance, providing reliable eyewear for active young individuals. With the Stellest and MiYOSMART spectacle lenses, we aim to provide children with an effective solution for managing myopia while offering comfort and long-lasting performance.

MiSight® Contact Lenses

CooperVision’s MiSight® contact lenses offer a convenient and comfortable solution for myopia management. These soft, daily disposable contact lenses utilise the innovative ActivControl® technology, which incorporates both correction and treatment zones.

The correction zones in MiSight® lenses provide effective vision correction, while the treatment zones deliver myopic defocus to help control the elongation of the eye’s axial length. It is recommended to wear these lenses for at least six days per week to achieve optimal results.

Through extensive three-year trials, MiSight® contact lenses have demonstrated their effectiveness in reducing myopia progression by up to 59%. This remarkable outcome underscores the potential of MiSight® as a reliable option for managing myopia and promoting better eye health.

How else can you help your child?

Here are some recommended lifestyle changes to promote your child’s eye health:

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

2. When reading books or using digital devices, advise your child to hold them at least 30cm away from their eyes.

3. Encourage regular breaks from close work every 30 minutes, if possible.

4. Regular eye examinations are crucial for everyone, especially for monitoring myopia progression.

If you have any further inquiries or would like to explore myopia management options for your children, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Martin James Opticians. We are here to assist you and provide the necessary information.