Myopia (Nearsightedness) Prevention Myopia is an eye condition that blurs the distance vision but has a clear focal point somewhere within arms reach. The greater the myopia, the closer focal point. Halting the progression of myopia could impact the lives of about 42 million children in the U.S. Once myopia begins in children 8 to 13 years old, it usually gets worse by three quarters of a diopter per year. Eye glass prescriptions are made in quarters. There’s four quarters in a dollar and four quarters in a diopter. If a child is first diagnosed with myopia at the age of 8 and worsens at the usual rate, he or she will be a -6.00 by the age of 15. This means without visual correction they will only be able to see clear at a distance of six inches! What causes nearsightedness? Don’t only blame genes. Although, several studies have shown that a child with one or both parents nearsighted increases the risk of myopia, genes can not fully explain the great surge in myopia world-wide. Neither does extended near work, such as reading and computers. Studies on populations that have not adopted a westernized lifestyle show that only 2% are nearsighted, while the U.S. is 41.6% as of 2004 and Asians are 60 to 80% myopic. In 1900, Eskimos had a near sighted rate of 2% and by the 1950’s with the adoption of a processed, sugary, westernized diet the rate was around 50%! Genes and environment play a role in myopia, but sugar may also have a critical role. A number of studies have shown that children with many cavities are more likely to have greater degrees of myopia. What can be done at home to prevent or slow myopia? 1. Get outside at least 12 hours a week. 2. Minimize the amount of processed sugar in the diet. It’s recommended to consume less than eight teaspoons of sugar a day, while the typical American child consumes 22 teaspoons a day. (Four grams equals one teaspoon) Added sugar on the label can be called high fructose corn syrup, refined sugar, cane sugar, dextrose, agave nectar, glucose, and sucrose to name a few. 3. Apply the 20/20 rule. For every twenty minutes you read or stare at a computer/ smartphone, take a 20 second break and look at the window or at something 20 feet away. The eyes need to focus and work harder while doing near work and they relax when viewing in the distance. Another theory of myopic progression is that the eyes become nearsighted due to excessive near work. 4. Wear up-to-date glasses. When under corrected (ie old prescription or not wearing glasses) the eyes get worse at a faster rate of nearsightedness. What can be prescribed by your eye doctor to prevent or slow myopia? 1. Orthokeratology lenses also known as ortho-k, CRT, or GVSS. Very small retainers custom fit to your eyes, worn only for sleep and when removed in the morning, you have clear vision throughout the day! Works well for those who play sports that don’t allow glasses and contact lenses can get water or dirt on them, such as water polo, volleyball, cheerleading, football, baseball, and soccer to name a few. 2. If not a candidate for ortho-k and myopic progression is a great concern, a very diluted dilating drop may be perscribed. 3. In select cases, reading, bifocal or progressive glasses or multifocal contact lenses or eye exercises. Dr. Nathan Schramm, O.D., C.N.S. is an optometric physician and an ocular nutrition specialist. He is in practice with his wife, Dr. Julie Abraham O.D., at various locations throughout south Florida. The clinic is currently accepting new patients for eye exams, glasses, contact lenses, and eye disease management. (954) 217-2992 www.naturaleyesofweston.com
South Florida Eye Doctors Restore Vision and Quality of Life to Their Patients
Source: Natural Eyes Of Weston
Dated: May 06, 2014
Drs. Schramm and Abraham, a husband and wife team presented case reports at a major medical conference, Vision by Design 2014.
WESTON, Fla. -- Dr. Julie Abraham and Dr. Nathan Schramm from Fort Lauderdale, FL just returned from and lectured about scleral contact lenses at the annual educational conference of the American Academy of Orthokeratology and Myopia Control (AAOMC) in Chicago, IL, USA.
Nathan Schramm, OD, CNS of Natural Eyes of Weston presented a case in which he restored his 22 year old patient's vision with keratoconus from legally blind to being able to drive again by fitting him in scleral
lenses. Dr. Schramm also taught other eye doctors how to fit this incredible advancement in ocular
Julie Abraham, OD of Natural Eyes of Weston discussed a case that made her patient exclaim, You changed my life! because in glasses the patient was not comfortable and able to see well. Dr. Abraham fit her in X-cel's Atlantis Scleral lenses and she could now see better than 20/20 for both reading and distance vision. Plus, successfully treated her severe dry eyes.
Other international speakers presented on a variety of orthoK topics but the myopia epidemic, its impact on public health and new methods for slowing nearsightedness in children were the top priority. Over 500 doctors attended representing the U.S., Puerto Rico, Canada, China, Mexico, Columbia, Costa Rica, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Poland, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand,Netherlands,Taiwan, England, Thailand and Scotland.
The AAOMC is part of the International Academy of Orthokeratology (IAO), a worldwide organization of orthokeratologists who provide a non-surgical alternative for the correction of nearsightedness, astigmatism, hyperopia, presbyopia and myopia control. The AAOMC mission is to establish policy and to develop and update protocols and education for doctors performing corneal reshaping (orthokeratology) and myopia control.
Myopia (nearsightedness) is a progressive disease affecting 1.6 billion children and adults worldwide, with expectations that the number will hit 2.5 billion by 2020. Extensive research has proven that orthoK can slow the elongation of the eye which contributes to progressive nearsightedness as well as increases the risk of retinal detachments and glaucoma. 20/20 vision can be restored in as little as one day to one month
depending on severity. The treatment involves the fitting of a specialized gentle mold designed to reshape the eye surface during sleep refocusing/realigning the visual image to slow or stop eye growth. The image focused by glasses and conventional soft lenses actually contributes to the growth of the eye, increasing nearsightedness. For more information go to www.orthokacademy.com
Many patients with vision problems heartily embrace the idea of enjoying vision correction without having to wear eyeglasses or contact lenses. Not all of these patients, however, are good candidates for PRK or Lasik surgery, the two standard surgeries used to alter the way the cornea of the eye refracts light. If that describes you, don't fret -- because here at Natural Eyes Of Weston, we offer an advanced corneal reshaping technique known as orthokeratology, or Ortho-K. This non-surgical technique can produce changes to the way your cornea refracts light.
To understand the benefits of Ortho-K, let us first consider how the cornea works. The cornea is a transparent, spherical bulge that sits over the lens of your eye. In addition to protecting the inner parts of the eye, the cornea also performs some lens-like tasks of its own. The shape of cornea causes incoming light rays to be refracted, or bent, in such a way that the lens can focus them into a clear, sharp image before they pass on to the retina and optic nerve. Ultimately, the optic nerve transmits the image to your brain.
Deformations in the shape of the cornea cause refraction to go wrong in various ways, producing the fuzzy images characteristic of nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. Glasses and contact lens are curved to "pre-refract" incoming light to compensate for your personal degree of corneal deformation. Laser surgery actually corrects the shape of cornea itself, eliminating most of all of the visual errors that might otherwise call for corrective lenses.
Corneal Reshaping While You Sleep
While you might leap at the thought of permanently correcting vision problems, laser surgery isn't always the best eye care option. For instance, if you suffer from thin corneas, untreated cataracts, diabetes, certain autoimmune diseases, or a corneal disease called keratoconus, you should avoid laser eye surgery.
Some of our patients simply don't like the idea of any kind of surgery, or they want a reversible procedure. Orthokeratology may be an ideal choice for these individuals. Our Doctors will map the shape of your corneas precisely and then fabricate special contact lenses. Unlike standard contacts, you'll wear these lenses at night. The lenses perform a subtle corneal reshaping as you sleep, meaning that you can take them out the next morning and enjoy perfect or near-perfect vision.
Ortho-K can help you see clearly for one or two days at a time, or possibly even longer. By wearing them regularly at night, you can maintain your clarity of vision for as long as you decide to continue using them. If you decide to use another form of vision correction, simply stop wearing the Ortho-K lenses and your corneas will assume their previous shape once again. Talk to our knowledgeable staff to see whether Ortho-K makes sense for you.