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Does Your Child Have Myopia? Send Them Outside!

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Does Your Child Have Myopia? Send Them Outside!

Girl Smiling Grass Flower blog imageMyopia, more commonly known as nearsightedness, is a refractive error that affects millions of adults and children worldwide. This condition occurs when a person’s eyeball is too long, or the cornea or lens has an irregular shape. A myopic eye focuses the image at the front of the retina, as opposed to directly on the retina. it is often hereditary, especially if both parents are nearsighted.

Recent studies show that the more time spent outdoors can slow the onset or progression of myopia for reasons explained below. These findings are significant, as myopia can seriously impact eye health if left untreated. At Myopia Control Center At Suburban Eye Care, we’re here to answer any questions you may have and ensure that your child’s myopia is under control.

 How Does Spending Time Outdoors Benefit Myopia?

By spending time outdoors, children train their eyes to focus on distant objects and relax their eyes. Just as with any other muscle in the body, the muscles in the eye need to be trained and strengthened in order to produce clear vision. Experts further suggest that moderate exposure to sunlight has a positive impact on myopia and general eye health.

A recent study was conducted by the Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE) at the University of Waterloo’s School of Optometry and Vision Science. The study shows that children who spend 1 extra hour outdoors each week reduce their risk of developing myopia by over 14%.

In contrast, according to the National Institute of Health, children who spend a considerable amount of time indoors watching TV or playing video games are at a significantly higher risk of developing nearsightedness.

Outdoor time should be incorporated into every child’s routine, especially those at risk of developing myopia. Parents and caregivers can make being outdoors fun by playing sports, hiking new trails, enjoying picnics or barbeques, or organizing scavenger hunts.

 Why Is Slowing Myopia Progression So Important?

Myopia generally worsens over time, mostly during childhood and into the adolescent years. If your child’s prescription regularly increases, this can lead to more serious complications. Myopia progression heightens the risk of developing other eye conditions and disorders, such as cataracts, glaucoma, or retinal detachment. In more severe cases, permanent vision loss —  or even blindness— may occur.

This is why it is crucial to monitor your child’s condition with a yearly visit to Dr. John Jacobi. Not sure whether your child has myopia? Refer to the following list.

Signs of Myopia in Children

Children with myopia may exhibit any of the following:

  • Squinting when reading the board or watching TV
  • Lack of interest in playing sports that require distance vision
  • Positioning oneself at close proximity to the TV or screen
  • Sitting at the front of the classroom to clearly see the teacher and board
  • Holding books close to the eyes

If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms or if you’ve noticed some of these behaviors, give outdoor time a try and bring him or her in to Myopia Control Center At Suburban Eye Care for a  comprehensive eye exam. We offer evidence-based myopia management treatment to slow down the progression of nearsightedness, thus preventing severe vision loss later in life.

Myopia Control Center At Suburban Eye Care provides myopia management and other treatments to patients in Metro Detroit, Plymouth, Ann Arbor, Dearborn, and throughout Michigan.

REFERENCES:

 Centre for Ocular Research & Education

 National Institutes of Health



Low Vision Patient able to read her newspaper again

Low Vision Patient able to see clear at a distance again with E-Scoops

Low Vision Patient able to see from a distance again

Low Vision Patient able to read for the first time in a long time

Low Vision Video Testimonial

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Our priority is your health and safety and that of our staff. Through May 28, we continue to only see patients in-office by appointment with an eye emergency or urgent medical needs. Please call to schedule an appointment or to discuss your medical emergency with the doctor – (734) 525-8170.

However, for your convenience, our Opticians are now dispensing glasses and doing adjustments curbside by appointment only, at which time patients are expected to be wearing masks. Please call to schedule your appointment.

We will reopen for normal business hours on Friday, May 29.

We are now scheduling patients appointments, with priority given to those with medical needs first. We have new features and protocols in place to ensure your safety. To learn about these protocols, as well as to learn about new patient expectations for appointments, click here. Please call us to schedule your appointment or with any questions today! 734-525-8170.