What is myopia and how can you help protect your child’s eyes from it?

Special lens designed to reduce the rate of myopia from The Eye Place in Bakewell

If you're short-sighted there's a chance your child may be too. - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Say aye to defending your child’s vision against short-sightedness and giving them the best possible future.

In a world of consoles, tablets, mobiles and social media, screen time seems an unavoidable part of growing up, which is why now, more than ever, we as parents must do all we can to help protect our child’s eyesight.

Alex Kemp, optometrist and owner of The Eye Place in Bakewell reveals how you can do just that.

Q: What is myopia?

A: Myopia, more commonly known as short-sightedness, affects how light focuses on the retina, making nearby objects appear blurry. Research suggests modern lifestyle changes could mean as many as five billion people could suffer from myopia by 2050. Click here to find out five other things you may not know about myopia. 

Q: How can you tell your child is short-sighted?

A: If you notice your child squinting, rubbing their eyes, struggling to read, asking to sit close to the TV, or move nearer to the whiteboard in class, then they may have myopia. Short-sightedness can also be hereditary, meaning if you have vision problems, it’s likely your child could have them too.

Q: Can you slow the progression of myopia?

A: Yes, you can. A new lens developed by HOYA has been designed specifically to help manage the symptoms of myopia. A two-year clinical trial showed wearers of the MiYOSMART lens experienced a 60 per cent reduction in their myopia progression than those wearing single vision lenses.

Q: How does the MiYOSMART lens work?

Symptoms of myopia in your child from The Eye Place in Bakewell

If your child is struggling to read, is sitting too close to the TV or rubbing their eyes a lot, it could be a sign that they have myopia. - Credit: HOYA MiYOSMART

Most Read

A: The lens is designed using Defocus Incorporated Multiple Segments (DIMS) technology, developed at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. It’s built from a series of smaller lenses that defocus the peripheral vision, tricking the eye into thinking it's large enough, and providing clear vision. It’s the first spectacle lens of its kind that can reduce the rate of myopia and prevent children’s eye prescriptions from deteriorating.

Q: Is the lens suitable for children to wear?

A: The lens is made from polycarbonate, so it’s durable, long-lasting, and ideal for active and busy children. It’s also water-repellent, provides comprehensive UV protection, and the anti-reflective coating makes the lens easy to clean. The lens is easy to fit, can be worn continuously and paired with any glasses frame, to suit your child’s taste and personality.

Q: What else can you do to protect your child’s eyesight?

A: Reduce the amount of time they’re allowed to spend on screens, encourage them to take regular breaks when completing school work on the computer, and ensure they get two hours of daily outdoor play to help protect their vision. Sunglasses are very important - make sure you have good quality ones for your child in time for summer. It’s also a good idea to ensure rooms are well lit and that they are sitting at the recommended distance from the TV or laptop.

Lens experts at The Eye Place in Bakewell can help protect your child's vision

Lens experts at The Eye Place in Bakewell can help you find the best lens for your child. - Credit: The Eye Place

You should also book your child in for frequent eye exams from the age of two and upwards. We offer state-of-the-art, comprehensive OCT 3D eye scans to check the health of the eye, and regular eye tests enable us to diagnose issues early. Myopia develops over time, meaning the sooner we can detect it, the better.

Q: How can you find the best lens for your child?

A: Speak with one of our lens experts to find the right lens for your child. Our skilled optometrists can recommend the best eyecare routine, and fit the lenses in your chosen frame, determining the correct weight and thickness for maximum comfortability.

We also offer six-monthly follow-up appointments to monitor your child's prescription when wearing the MiYOSMART lenses, and a member of our team is always on hand to help with aftercare. It’s best to pre-book your eye exam before visiting, online or over the phone.

The Eye Place is an independent optician that prides itself on the high-quality customer service, spectacles and lenses it provides. Using innovative technology, they aim to provide only the best eye care services you can depend on. In 2018, the MiYOSMART lens won the prestigious Grand Prize, Grand Award and Special Gold Medal at the 46th International Exhibition of Inventions of Geneva.

Visit the-eye-place.co.uk to book an appointment.

Contact the Bakewell practice on 01629 813603 or email bakewell@the-eye-place.co.uk.

Call the Dore practice on 01144 300 028 or email dore@the-eye-place.co.uk.