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Can Early Detection Prevent Nearsightedness?

Did you know a staggering 40% of Americans suffer from Nearsightedness or “Myopia”?

Myopia, the medical term, allows close objects to seem clear while distant objects seem distorted. The development of this irregularity occurs when the eyeball grows too long or when the cornea grows too curved. The resulting light entering the misshapen eye causes improper focus, which also causes distant objects to appear blurry.

In most cases, Myopia or Nearsightedness is hereditary. However, environmental factors are increasingly becoming visual stress culprits for risk, such as:
Excessive electronic device usage
Changes in educational and recreational behavior
Unfamiliarity with eye health management and preventative myopia programs

These stressors lead to an important question. What if we could control risk factors and alter the trajectory of eye health? In many ways, we possess this capability. The ability derives from self-awareness and attentiveness to signs children are unable to convey at times, such as:

  • Headaches
  • Positions closely to screens, devices, and boards
  • Squints frequently
  • Sudden loss of interest in reading or in studying

There are many things we can do to slow down the progression of myopia:

  • Use the 20/20/20 rule:
    • Look away from near-task work or screen every 20 minutes, for 20 seconds, and at something 20 feet away.
  • Spending more time outdoors and less time on tablets!
  • Early screening and using recommended corrective treatment
  • Enrolling in a myopia management program with your eye doctor.

Of everything mentioned above, the best tool to combat childhood myopia is to schedule a comprehensive examination. Children should have their first comprehensive eye exams at six months, then 18 months, and 36 months of age. Also, a follow-up should occur each year thereafter.

During the screening, your eye care practitioner can recommend the most appropriate treatment for ongoing management and preventative care. There is no better time to make your eyesight a priority than today. Regardless of age, it is critical to schedule an initial screening and consultation. Contact us today!