When it comes to vision problems, myopia (nearsightedness), is the most common in the world, affecting over 1 billion people.1 Studies have shown a rapid increase in nearsightedness in the last few decades, leading many scientists and health professionals to label it a myopia epidemic.2
While older populations are heavily affected by age-related vision loss, glaucoma, and cataracts, younger populations are more affected by nearsightedness than anyone else. Because the demographics of those people most frequently diagnosed with myopia skew younger, incidents of vision loss due to nearsightedness are often the first ones younger people experience. Young people affected by myopia often don’t realize what they are experiencing or how to deal with it.
Signs & Symptoms
Myopia generally manifests as blurry distance vision (hence the term nearsightedness); however, there can be blurred near vision in serious cases of nearsightedness. Typically, a person with severe nearsightedness would find himself having to hold objects very close to the eyes in order to see or read. Most people who are nearsighted experience eye strain from having to squint and focus constantly. They also may have difficulty seeing or driving at nighttime. Myopia sufferers can experience strain-related headaches as well.
Causes of Nearsightedness
Myopia is caused by genetics as well as other environmental factors.5 (aslo brien holden) . The “near work” theory postulates that detail-oriented, up-close work causes the eye strain that eventually leads to nearsightedness. There are also some researchers who believe that the increased prevalence and use of mobile devices (i.e. smart phones and tablets) may be contributing to the increase in cases of nearsightedness, particularly in younger, developing populations. 3
Treatments for Nearsightedness
Corrective lenses such as glasses or daytime contacts are the most common treatment for nearsightedness. They are effective at restoring lost vision while worn, but they have limitations. Many nearsighted people find glasses an unattractive or uncomfortable treatment option. Glasses can also be lost, broken, or limit certain physical activities, particularly sports.
Laser surgery, or LASIK, is also a common treatment for nearsightedness. Many patients consider surgery a drastic treatment option and are wary of the risk of serious complications, not to mention the high cost of LASIK procedures.
Luckily, there is a third proven treatment option that is an option for correcting vision than glasses or daytime contacts and also doesn’t carry high cost of laser eye surgery. This advanced solution is known as orthokeratology and is a course of treatment that uses special gas-permeable contact lenses to treat nearsightedness by reshaping the cornea. These special contact lenses are known as CRT (corneal refractive therapy) contact lenses.
Paragon Vision Sciences is one of the leaders in orthokeratology and the fight against the myopia epidemic. Paragon CRT® contact lenses are some of the most innovative and effective offerings in the vision correction industry. Paragon’s lenses are custom-fitted to each patient’s eyes by a certified Paragon CRT® eye care professional. The custom lenses are designed to be worn at night while sleeping. While they are inserted, the lenses are working to reshape the cornea to reduce nearsightedness. By morning, the lenses can be removed and eyesight will remain corrected throughout the day.* It’s that simple. No hassling with glasses or contacts all day, and no need for surgery.
Paragon CRT® contact lenses have been FDA-approved for the treatment of nearsightedness since 2002. 4 When worn every night, Paragon CRT® contact lenses help you wake up to clearer vision every day. If you are nearsighted and want freedom from daytime contacts or glasses without surgery, start by finding a certified practitioner in your area.
*7 to 14 day treatment period for full correction
- 1 - 3 Brien Holden Institute data on file, 2010
- 4 - FDA.GOV.PMA
- 5 - Near work theory (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0042698901001353)