Everything You Need to Know About Orthokeratology Lenses

opticians in Colchester

Myopia, a word perhaps not all of us are familiar with but what is otherwise known as short-sightedness by many. In fact, one of the main reasons our patients choose us as their go-to local independent opticians is because they are seeking a cure for myopia. Whilst myopia can’t be cured, it can definitely be controlled. This is where we, Optical Revolution, come to the fore.

What is myopia and what are the causes?

Many children develop myopia, the primary symptom of which is short-sightedness. A child’s eyes become longer over time, causing distant objects to appear blurry. If it progresses without being addressed, myopia will often worsen as your child gets older.

Is your child struggling to see the whiteboard at school? If so, you should consider booking a comprehensive eye test not only as a means of checking for myopia, but also as a chance to assess the general health of your children’s eyes.

Several factors can contribute to the occurrence of myopia, the most prevalent being:

  • Genetic: if one or both parents are myopic, the chances of their child(ren) developing myopia is significantly higher
  • Weakness or imbalance in the muscles of the eye that focus or make the eyes work together
  • Not spending enough time outside, or spending too much time in front of devices or close objects

Generally, the younger children are when they develop myopia, the faster their vision deteriorates and the more severe it is in adulthood. Myopia usually stops becoming worse at around the 20 years of age.  

Who is affected by myopia?

Approximately one in three people across the United Kingdom are affected by myopia, with this figure rising year on year. Globally, it is predicted that by 2050 almost 50% of the world’s population will have myopia. To put it into perspective…

  • Almost 1 in 5 teenagers in the UK have myopia
  • The prevalence of myopia across the UK has almost doubled since the 1960’s
  • Myopia is most likely to occur between 6 and 13 years of age
  • Children with a parent who has myopia are almost three times more likely to have myopia by the age of 13 than a child without a myopic parent.

What is orthokeratology?

Orthokeratology, also referred to as Ortho K, is a non-surgical procedure undertaken for those with myopia as a means of leading to an improvement in vision the following day. The procedure involves rigid gas-permeable contact lenses being worn at night as a means of temporarily reshaping the cornea.

Do orthokeratology lenses cure myopia?

There is a misinformed myth that myopia can be cured. Whilst there is currently not a cure for myopia, it can definitely be managed through temporary corrective solutions to stabilise blurred vision.

Previously, the only possible treatment for the condition was corrective lenses in the form of a traditional pair of glasses. A large number of people still choose to stick with this traditional solution, and there is no doubt that a well-chosen pair of glasses can be a great look. But technology has moved on and now there are copious other alternatives available to treat and manage myopia.

At Optical Revolution and across all of our practices, we provide a non-surgical treatment to correct myopia. Our myopia management program offers various treatment options to suit your lifestyle and needs, ranging from orthokeratology lenses to Ortho K contacts. But how does it work?

How do orthokeratology lenses work?

Ortho K (orthokeratology) treatment uses specially designed contact lenses to correct your vision by gently reshaping the cornea (the clear dome that forms the front surface of the eye) whilst you sleep. Success is immediate, with the user being able to see clearly once the lenses are removed the following morning. A whole day of crystal-clear vision without the need to wear glasses or contact lenses during the day. This effect can last for up to two days, but we find that the best results are achieved by sleeping with the lenses in every night.

Additionally, the lenses can also be used to treat astigmatism (meaning that the eye is shaped more like a rugby ball than a sphere) and hyperopia (long-sightedness). They can also sometimes be used to correct long-sightedness or “presbyopia”. Ortho K lenses can also be used to reduce the progression of childhood myopia.

How will my child benefit from myopia management at Optical Revolution?

Children love to run around, and so not needing to wear glasses is an added benefit to their energetic lifestyles – the fact that your child does not need to wear correct lenses during the day means that you illuminate the risk of broken glasses from sporting activities or playground rough and tumble, saving both cost and aggravation. As the changes aren’t permanent, there isn’t the risk of causing damage by over correcting either.

What are the other benefits of ortho k lenses?

As one of the leading independent opticians in Colchester, Southfields, Haywards Heath, Catford and Eastbourne, we have the knowledge and experience to confidently suggest the use of ortho k contacts to adults as a non-surgical alternative to refractive surgeries such as LASIK. Many people are nervous about LASIK eye surgery but also do not like to wear corrective lenses as they go about their day. The non-invasive nature of Ortho K contacts represents the perfect solution for people in such a situation.

Other benefits include the following:

  • Orthokeratology provides you with the freedom to go about your day-to-day activities without the addition of glasses or contact lenses
  • If you’re a keen sports person, then who will probably jump at the chance of swimming, running, cycling, or in general participating in sports without glasses or contact lenses
  • Dry eyes, allergies and discomfort are not aggravated further from the use of contact lenses. Ortho K lenses reduce dryness overnight as there is little tear evaporation, therefore decreasing discomfort.

Ortho K contacts are a reversible, safe, non-invasive method of dealing with poor eyesight without the need to wear corrective lenses during the day. Come and see our opticians on Colchester High Street to find out if this exciting approach can help to improve your eyesight and liberate you from the need to wear corrective lenses when you are out and about.

What contact lenses do you offer to control myopia?

At Optical Revolution, we use MiSight, a soft contact lens that has been clinically proven to slow the progress of myopia in children and lower the risk of myopia-related conditions in adulthood. These daily contact lenses put to use ActivControl™ technology to manage ortho k myopia control, and have been FDA approved as a means of slowing the progression of myopia in children between the ages of 8 and 12 years at the beginning of treatment.

How do the glasses help to control myopia?

Our team across our practices use MiyoSmart lenses for myopia correction, proven to curb the progression of myopia by an average of 60% compared to children who wear standard prescription glasses. It works through DIMS (Defocus Incorporated Multiple Segments) technology, the lens creates an optical zone for correcting refractive error and multiple defocus segments surrounding the centre of the eye.

If you are concerned about the health of your child’s eyes and would like to book an appointment then please contact our team of friendly and professional optometrists and opticians in Colchester, Southfields, Haywards Heath, Catford and Eastbourne. Or alternatively, book your appointment online now in a few simple steps with our booking form!

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