By Jacqui Mayhew 

Contact lenses for children  can have a hugely significant positive impact on their academic and personal development, with age no longer a barrier to offering this treatment option. Experienced opticians can fit children as young as five years old but the key challenge is to try and ensure that parents recognise the importance of having their children's sight tested regularly from an early age. According to a study published by the College of Optometrists, whilst over 90% of children visit a dentist regularly, only 53% have ever had a sight test yet poor eyesight can have a significant effect on children's ability to learn and on their behaviour. Hence why it is vital that parents book their children in for an eye examination before they start school and then every 18 months thereafter.

Vision problems often go unrecognised by teachers, parents and by the children themselves but the sooner that vision problems are detected - the better the outcome. Indeed, most vision anomalies detected before the age of 7 years old have a high possibility of being fully corrected but if not detected this often results in children struggling with simple reading and writing exercises as well as impacting on their self-confidence at a key stage in their academic and personal development. Now with the launch of Ortho-k contact lenses for children , there is an excellent new treatment available to correct short-sightedness which provides a wide range of benefits.

Firstly, Ortho-k lenses are only worn while sleeping since they work by gently reshaping the surface of the eye overnight under the mild pressure of closed eyelids. This corrects the focusing distance so that distant objects - like the blackboard in school or the ball on the sports field - can be seen clearly and the effect lasts for over 24 hours. So after removing lenses each morning, children enjoy perfect natural vision all day long until lenses are reinserted at bedtime and parents do not have to worry about calls from their children's school about lost or broken glasses or contact lenses. Secondly, research has now shown that wearing Ortho-k contact lenses for children  actually stops short-sightedness getting worse so that once the optician has detected the problem and fitted Ortho-k lenses, it will ensure that the child is not at risk of entering adulthood with a more severe eyesight problem.

Check if your child is suitable for overnight Ortho-k corrective contact lenses .

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