This article aims to address the concerns of the high rates of severe myopia in children below the ages of 12 years old. There is an alarming rate of myopia among this age group alongside the rapid advancements in technology and the increasing ease of availability of smart devices. The chances of a child developing severe myopia upon reaching adulthood is closely related to the age when he was first diagnosed with myopia. The younger the child when he was first diagnosed with myopia, the higher the degree of myopia that he would eventually suffer from in the later years of his life. Severe myopia would be classified as having a myopia eye degree of 1000 and above. The eyes would normally deteriorate with age and only reach a stabilized condition at an individual’s early twenties.
What are the causes of myopia? In young children, poor eye care habits have been attributed to the accelerating rates of myopia. Due to the incorporation of smart devices as a teaching tool into the education system and the indispensable need for these smart electronic gadgets to transform our past boring and mundane lives for the better, the increasing exposure to new media and smart devices have done irreversible damage to the eyes. Long hours of glaring at the brightly lighted and almost glaring computer screens and mobile devices have shaped the cornea irregularly. The eyeball starts to widen and elongate to the extent that it modifies and hampers the vision of the unsuspecting individual. Over time, the damage done to the eyes will manifest as myopia and corrective external aid such as contact lenses or glasses may be required to temporarily regain perfect vision to allow the individual to continue with his daily tasks.
With myopia, the child becomes unable to focus on objects that are far away but only has the ability to view things that are nearer to him. Other factors that may be held accountable for this medical condition would be genetics. When there is a history of severe myopia among both parents or even only one parent, his children would be at a higher risk of falling victim to myopia.
If you know that your children are potential sufferers of myopia, you can help them delay the process. What can you do about it? There are effective eye exercises that can be regularly practiced to aid in the relaxation of the eye muscles. For starters, looking out of the window at far away buildings or to simply enjoying the greenery after 30 minutes of using the computer or prolonged mobile device usage, can greatly lessen the strain on the eyes. Simple eye exercises involving a gentle massage on the surrounding muscles around the eye area that require less than 5 minutes for both eyes, can greatly help in preserving good vision in the long run.
Diet is also one of the crucial and pivotal factors that young children tend to overlook and neglect. As caregivers or parents, one should make a conscious effort to include foods that are high in vitamins and minerals in your children’s daily consumption of food and liquids. From salmon slabs to obtain the required dose of omega-3 fatty acids to crunchy carrots that a child may include in his meal plans to obtain abundant vitamin A, such foods are essential to maintaining good and healthy sight.
From a medical point of view, it pays to be open to new treatment alternatives for your child’s myopic condition. As parents, we should not merely aim to restore clear vision for our children through spectacles or contact lenses, but also to work towards the eventual goal of curbing while simultaneously reducing the myopia progression and power. In this situation, doctors may recommend that children turn to Atropine. Atropine is a weekly treatment eye drop that complements the spectacles and contact lenses usage in children. This eyedrop will help prevent the elongation of the eyeball and relaxes the muscles to prevent over-squinting. Using the drug will prevent the worsening of your child’s myopia.
For those who are already suffering from a certain degree of myopia while reading this article, it is surely relieving to know that corrective procedures to get a second chance at having perfect vision are becoming increasingly safe and popular. The final words of advice regarding this impending myopic nation would be that your eyes are precious and more time and effort should be invested into excellent eye care habits so that your eyes may last you a lifetime. Do get your eyes checked today.