Myopia – often referred to as nearsightedness – is a common eye health condition in which the eyeball elongates, causing light rays to focus incorrectly in the eye, thus making distance vision burry.
Severity of Pediatric Myopia:
More than 40 percent of Americans are myopic and that number is increasing
at an alarming rate, especially among school-aged children.
One in four parents have a child with myopia and about three quarters of
children with myopia were diagnosed between the ages of 3 and 12.
Two-thirds of eye care professionals (ECPs) say the presence of myopia
among children in their practice has increased over the past 5-10 years, and
81% of ECPs recognize it as one of the biggest problems impacting children’s
CAUSES OF MYOPIA:
Myopia typically occurs during childhood when the eyeball develops a larger
or longer shape, meaning the distance between the front of the eye and the
retina at the back of the eye is longer than normal. Blurry vision due to myopia
is the result of light rays focusing at a point in front of the retina rather than
directly on the surface.
However, the upward incidence of myopia can be attributed to different
factors, and is occasionally the result of a combination of these factors:
Genetics – Family history plays a role in a child’s risk of myopia. If neither parent is myopic, the chance the child will develop myopia is low. But, if one parentis myopic, it increases the child’s chance of developing myopia by 3x – doubling to 6x if both parents are myopic.
Environment – Exposure to sunlight, vitamin D intake, dopamine levels and the amount of time someone spends outdoors have an impact on an individual’s likelihood of being myopic. Research shows spending more time outdoors lowers the risk of childhood myopia.