The Myopia (Nearsightedness) Epidemic
Not just a children's vision issue, a children's health issue
What is myopia? Frequently referred to as "nearsightedness," myopia is a common vision disorder that is on the rise, particularly among children. When a child or adult has myopia, distant objects will look blurry or out of focus while objects up close will appear clear and in focus.
Myopia is caused by changes to the shape of the eye globe specifically elongation or lengthening. This impairs the eye's ability to properly focus light that is being projected on the back of the eye, called the retina.
How Myopia Can Affect Your Child
If left untreated, myopia can affect your child's ability to learn and lead to serious future complications later in life such as glaucoma, cataracts and detached retina and macular degenerative disease.¹
The Global Myopia Epidemic
Myopia is increasing at alarming rates and has reached epidemic proportions globally.
Child myopia is much more than a vision issue it can lead to serious long term complications, including detached retina, glaucoma and cataracts.
Consider the fact that reported cases of myopia have increased in the United States by 66% since 1971.² Because of the long-term complications of myopia, many medical experts consider myopia to be a serious children's health issue.
Nearsightedness is also skyrocketing to dramatic levels throughout Europe and East Asia, with concentrated growth in the youth segment of the population. The statistics are startling. For example, sixty years ago, 15% of the Chinese population was nearsighted. Today, up to 90% of teenagers and young adults have myopia.³
If those statistics have not captured your attention, consider the latest projection: If myopia trends continue, by 2050, 4.8 billion people will be nearsighted. That's 49.8% of the population.⁴
How Does My Child Develop Myopia?
You may be asking yourself, what could change the shape of my child's eye and cause nearsightedness? The answer is twofold: genetics and lifestyle. With regard to genetics, children whose parents are myopic or have a family history of myopia will have a higher risk of developing nearsightedness.
Click and watch to learn about what causes nearsightedness and how it is reaching epidemic proportions worldwide.
The second variable, and one that is thought by some researchers to play a tremendously powerful role, is lifestyle. The thought is that staring at any object, like cell phones or tablets, too long can cause the eye to lengthen, which can lead to myopia.
Dr. Maria Liu, head of the Myopia Control Clinic at UC Berkeley's School of Optometry, says, "The problem with smartphones and iPads is that kids often hold them closer to their eyes than they would a book, and they can become totally absorbed for hours at a time. The working distance for handheld devices is much closer than it is for laptops and TV."⁵
How Do I Know If My Child Has Myopia?
If your child has been showing signs of the following, they may be suffering from myopia:
- Persistent need to squint or close eyelids to see clearly
- Headaches (due to eyestrain)
- The need to sit closer to the television, movie screen, or the front of the classroom
- Holding books very close while reading
- Not noticing distant objects
- Blinking excessively
- Rubbing eyes frequently
If you are unsure about your child's vision, don't wait. Make an appointment with your eye care professional today or click here to find a certified CRT eye care practitioner near you.
Protect Your Child's Potential
Watch this video and you'll see that when you treat your child's myopia you're not only protecting their health but also their future potential.
All parents want the best for their children. Take a moment and picture your child with sharp, clear vision free from the burden of glasses or daytime contact lenses.
Imagine your son or daughter with a greater sense of self-esteem and better prepared to meet the visual demands of the classroom. Now envision their ability to excel at sports like swimming, baseball and more.
With Paragon CRT Contact Lenses, you can take comfort in knowing as a parent you are addressing a vision disorder that if left untreated could impact your child's ability to learn and could lead to serious visual issues later in life, as mentioned earlier.
Paragon CRT Lenses, A Safe, Effective Treatment For Myopia
Does overnight vision correction sound too good to be true? It's not. FDA-approved Paragon CRT lenses have provided over a million patients in more than 50 countries a safe, effective treatment for myopia.⁶
How Do I Get CRT Lenses For My Child?
Parents: Paragon CRT lenses can only be obtained through eye care professionals who have received an FDA-approved certification and training program.
Schedule a Paragon CRT screening for your child today. Determining whether your child is a candidate for Paragon CRT is as easy as making an appointment with a certified eye care practitioner. The eye examination is a simple one, and your eye care professional will answer any additional questions that you may have.
While there are other CRT-like lenses in the market, Paragon CRT is the only brand worn by children in over 50 countries worldwide.⁷ Don't settle for less. When meeting with your eye care professional, make sure you request Paragon CRT by name.
Click here to find a certified Paragon CRT eye care professional near you, and schedule your appointment today.
- Xu L, Wang Y, Wang S, Wang Y & Jonas JB, "High Myopia and Glaucoma Susceptibility: The Beijing Eye Study," Ophthalmology, Volume 114, Issue 2, February 2007; Praveen MR,Shah GD, Vasavada AR, Mehta PG, Gilbert C & Bhagat G "A study to explore the risk factors for the early onset of cataract in India," Eye, 24, (June 2009).
- Vitale S, Sperduto RD, Ferris FL 3rd. Increased Prevalence of Myopia in the U.S. between 1971-1972 and 1999-2004. Arch Ophthalmol. 2009 Dec;127(12):1632-9. PubMed.
- Dolgin, Elie, The Myopia Boom, Nature: International Journal of Science, March 2015.
- Beck, Julie, In 2050 Half the World Will be Nearsighted, The Atlantic, February 2016.
- Yang, Sara, New eye clinic to target youth amid epidemic of nearsightedness, Berkeley News, August 2013
- Data on file at Paragon Vision Sciences.
- Data on file at Paragon Vision Sciences.