Pediatric optometry

Early examination of children is critical for prevention of vision loss due to amblyopia or ‘lazy eye’. Amblyopia is a problem of development of the eyes and can result from uncorrected vision. It is believed that our visual systems continue to develop until 7-9 years of age. Therefore, it is important to have an eye examination with an optometrist prior to this age.

Dr Susan Issa performs eye exams for young and school-age children in our clinic. During the exam, Dr Issa will check your child’s visual acuity if possible depending on the child’s age and check the alignment of her eyes. She may need to use drops that relax the muscles inside the eye in order to assess your child’s vision. A pediatric optometry exam includes an ocular health assessment.

Myopia

Myopia (nearsightedness) in children is increasing at an alarming rate. Myopia is becoming more and more prevalent around the world. By 2050, research suggests that 50% of the world’s population may be myopic.  Myopia is considered elevated as of -6D, at which point the risk of pathologies such as retinal detachment, glaucoma, cataracts and maculopathy increases.

Risk Factors

There are several risk factors that contribute to the likelihood of developing myopia. These factors include genetics, eye length and environmental conditions.

It’s important to delay myopia onset until after 10 years old because progression of myopia is much faster before the age of 10.

Studies show 1-2 hours per day of outdoor time before myopia onset can provide a protective effect against myopia.

We recommend no screen time for children under the age of 2. Between the ages of 2 and 8, children should be on screens for no more than 1 hour per day. For children over the age of 8, a maximum of 2 hours of screen time per day for leisure (excluding school work) is recommended.

Nutrition

Nutrition is also an important factor that can influence the length of the eye. Foods with high glycemic content are more likely to lead to myopia.

Treatment Options

There are several treatment options available to help control myopia progression, including orthokeratology (wearing hard contact lenses overnight), soft multifocal lenses, pharmaceutical drops and myopia management glasses lenses.

Eyeglass lenses for Myopia Management

Special myopia management eyeglass lenses, such as those in the Myopia Management Portfolio from ZEISS, are a convenient method for treating progressive myopia in children. These lenses are designed for treating the progression of myopia and are probably the most comfortable solution for a young patient

New contact lens specifically designed for the pediatric eye, now available at ROCKLAND EYE.

Abiliti ™ by Acuvue is a therapeutic lens designed for myopia management in children and young teens. The material is the same as the Oasys 1-day with which many of you are already familiar. So your children will enjoy the same comfort. Studies show that this lens slows the progression of myopia by -0.50D in as little as 6 months. The parameters of this lens have been designed to fit the smaller corneas of this young population. Another special feature is the UV protection, a feature which is unique to Acuvue lenses. These lenses also have a high oxygen permeability, so you can rest assured that your children are getting the utmost in comfort and protection for their eyes.

Please note our optometrists do not participate in the Régie de l’assurance maladie du Québec (RAMQ) public healthcare plan. There are examination fees for all patients including patients aged 0-17 and 65 and older.
Please note that you will still be eligible for the $250 reimbursement from the RAMQ as part of the government’s See Better To Succeed program, even if you purchase your child’s glasses at our clinic.