Eye care has always been a bit more reactive than proactive. You bring your child in for their annual exam and their prescription goes up at an alarming rate. It appears maybe something can be done to help slow the progression of myopia (nearsightedness).
Multifocal lens design
Optix Optometry easily has the most experience with myopia control in the Lafayette/West Lafayette area.
In 2013, new research in the field of myopia progression and control came about. It found that children are needing glasses at earlier ages and even progressing at faster rates than ever before. The doctors at Optix Optometry started looking at their own patients a little differently. If a child was quickly changing and had nearsighted parents (essentially bad "eye genetics"), it seemed reasonable to try to do something about it.
We started utilizing a special design of multifocal soft contact lenses to help control prescriptions in children as young as 7 or 8 years old. This lens variably refocuses images onto different parts of the retina for a better focus across the whole eye. Our young patients tolerated the lens well and while some needed help from a parent with lens insertion and removal, most patients did great on their own.
Since then, many of these patients have had little to no worsening of their overall prescription. Of the patients that have still worsened, the annual amount of change has been considerably less. While keeping a prescription from worsening helps your child be more able to move around the house without glasses on, it can also reduce the likelihood of retinal disease, cataract and glaucoma later in life.
It may not be for everyone, but it's awesome that we can finally be proactive and have a way to slow down the progression of myopia!
MiSight 1-Day disposable
The MiSight 1-Day disposable contact lens received FDA approval to slow myopia progression in 2019. It combines multifocal optics similar to the lenses described above with a proven 1-Day disposable lens material. Importantly, it is backed by data that was accumulated over 7 to 8 years.
The beauty of this is we now have a proven lens in a 1-Day disposable modality. The daily disposables just don't seem to have the level of problems when compared to biweekly, monthly or Paragon CRT lens modalities. Besides, who doesn't want a fresh lens on the eye every day?
Dr. Steve Beck finished the lengthy certification course for the MiSight lens in 2021 and it has quickly become our first-line treatment for myopia control due to its FDA approval.
Paragon CRT overnight lenses
The advent of Paragon CRT will cause you to rethink how to correct your vision. It is a custom contact lens that you actually put in before you go to bed, allowing the shape of the front of your eye to be gently corrected while you sleep. Think of it as being like a retainer lens that's designed for your vision instead of your teeth.
The idea of Paragon CRT is not new - the thought that a special type of contact lens could change your vision overnight has been around for many years. Paragon CRT is an accelerated version of this older process that used to take several months to achieve good vision. At the same time, it is also a safe option that is fully FDA approved and reversible.
Now, imagine waking up and being able to read that alarm clock that used to be blurry. You easily walk to the bathroom and actually take the special lenses out for a whole days worth of work and play.
One of the positive side effects of Paragon CRT is that it also variably refocuses images onto different parts of the retina. Most of our patients in Paragon CRT lenses have had very little to no change in their overall prescription since they began wearing them.
While there are many benefits to this lens modality, Dr. Beck has significantly cut back his fitting of them due to higher risk of changes developing on the cornea as well as the potential for more serious eye infections. Most patients requesting Paragon CRT have been doing so for the benefit of myopia control and there are much safer options like the MiSight 1-Day disposable lens.