Myopia in children: causes of myopia, its treatment and prevention
Mar 05, 2018
The most commonly diagnosed eye disease in childhood is myopia, or nearsightedness.The violation of vision of this direction is inherent in children aged 5-7 years, when the load on the eyes is significantly increased.It is noteworthy that in early preschool age only 14% of children are diagnosed with nearsightedness, but in 11-13 years this indicator increases to 38%.Table of contents Causes of nearsightedness in children Symptoms and signs of myopia Classification of myopia How myopia is diagnosed Myopia treatment in childhood Prevention of myopia in children
Causes of nearsightedness in children
Myopia is divided into two types - congenital and acquired.The essence of the pathology is the violation of the proportions between the refractive force and the anteroposterior axis of the eye.The refractive power in ophthalmology is called refraction - it starts to work with the anterior-posterior axis of the eye not in accordance, therefore the image of objects falls not on the retina of the eye, as it should be normal, but in front of it.
Nearsightedness is a vague image of all objects, you can bring your eyesight back to normal at a specific moment either with the help of negative lenses / glasses or by bringing the subject closely closer to the eyes.
Ophthalmologists have identified several risk factors that, under favorable conditions, can trigger the development of myopia in childhood. These include:
- premature baby, premature birth of the mother;
- anomalies of the anatomical development of an eyeball of an innate nature;
- increased intraocular pressure of an innate character;
- regular impairment of visual hygiene;
- often recurrent colds, influenza and acute respiratory viral infections;
- decreased immunity;
- some common diseases - for example, diabetes, Down's disease.
Hemorrhage plays a very important role in the development of myopia( nearsightedness). According to statistics, in children with such a visual impairment, children with a propensity for nearsightedness are born in 87% of cases.If myopia is diagnosed only in one parent, then the chances of having a baby with congenital myopia are very high, and the predisposition to development of the impaired vision in older age is 49%.
And yet more often in children diagnosed acquired nearsightedness, which can contribute to:
- violation of posture - so myopia often develops in schoolchildren;
- a big load on the eyes - it's not only reading and writing, but also watching TV for a long time, computer games;
- organization of a child's workplace that does not comply with the standards;
- insufficiently balanced nutrition - the body does not receive the right amount of vitamins and micro / macro elements.
Many parents mistakenly believe that myopia( nearsightedness) can develop due to prolonged reading or writing - this is due either to a hereditary predisposition or to an incorrect posture during work.
Symptoms and signs of myopia
The first sign of myopia is a decrease in visual acuity - the child begins to see badly into the distance, which causes it to squint.In rare cases, a child's visual impairment may be temporary, temporary, or reversible.
Symptoms of the disease under consideration include fast fatigue of the child when reading and watching television, offering an object close to the eyes, if desired, to carefully consider it.
Important: at this stage developing nearsightedness in the child is quite realistic to suspend - for this you need to visit a doctor, get advice and appointments to correct vision.
At 6 months of age the parents can note a short-term appearance of strabismus - this will also be a symptom of myopia, but one-year-olds will try to bring the visible object to their eyes and blink often.At school age, children will try to sit at the first desk - so they better see what is depicted / written on the school board.
A similar condition in childhood can cause a spasm of intraocular muscles, especially this syndrome occurs in children with diagnosed vegetative-vascular dystonia.But the "flashing of flies" before the eyes( the child himself will tell about this) testifies to the progression of the disease and the appearance of complications, in particular, destructive changes in the vitreous.
Classification of myopia
There are several types of myopia:
- pathological myopia - is characterized by a progressive course and is actually myopia;
- physiological myopia - develops against the background of eye growth and does not always indicate true myopia;
- Lenticular Myopia - against the background of myopia, the lens refractive lens develops and most often it occurs with diagnosed diabetes mellitus, congenital cataract.
By the type of flow, ophthalmologists distinguish between progressive myopia and non-progressive myopia.In the first case, visual impairment occurs regularly, but in the second case, a certain level of reduced visual acuity is established and there is no deterioration in this direction.
There are myopia and the intensity of manifestations:
- an easy degree of myopia - up to 3 diopters;
- average severity - up to 6 diopters;
- severe degree of myopia - over 6 diopters.
How is myopia diagnosed
Eye diseases are handled by an ophthalmologist and he, seeing the patient for the first time, conducts the following procedures within the diagnostic event:
- Interrogation of parents and the child.It helps to find out how long the first signs of visual impairment have appeared, how quickly the eyes of a child get tired when reading or watching TV / computer, there are or are no accompanying symptoms of myopia( eg, regular headaches, general malaise).
- Inspection of a child:
- Exterior examination of the eye - the shape and size of the eyeball is determined;
- ophthalmoscope examination - the size and shape of the cornea is determined, the condition of the lens and vitreous body is evaluated, the examination of the fundus is assessed.In the latter case, atrophic changes, pigmentation, hemorrhages, retinal detachment can be detected;
- assessment of the degree of myopia and the type of refraction - skiascopy;
- ultrasound examination - complications of myopia are revealed.
Note: in patients under 3 years old therapists use only the listed diagnostic methods, but they must perform comparative work with the results of the examination at 3 and 6 months( they are mandatory for each child).
In children older than 3 years, the definition of visual acuity is carried out according to special tables, the same examination allows you to choose lenses for vision correction.
In some cases, skiascopy is replaced by autorefractometry - the child is buried in the eye solution of atropine and examine the fundus by using a slit lamp.
Students are at risk for developing myopia, so they should be screened every 6 months.Even if myopia was detected at the first reception, do not think that this violation is forever - it is quite possible that this temporary phenomenon is associated with the growth of the eye.In this case, frequent preventive examinations from an ophthalmologist will help to detect the onset of disease progression in a timely manner and take effective measures.
Doctors believe that an increase in myopia by 0.5 diopters a year indicates a slow course of the disease, but if this figure exceeds 1 diopter per year, then it's time to "sound the alarm."Against the backdrop of such a rapid decline in vision, complications of myopia may develop - hemorrhage in the retina, its tears and detachment, destructive changes, which refers to irreversible processes.
Treatment of myopia in childhood
Cure myopia in childhood is impossible - this process can give the desired results only at the age of 18-20 years, when the growth of the eye stops.But to take medical measures when diagnosing the considered visual impairment in childhood is necessary to avoid irreversible processes in the retina of the eye and the eye day. The objectives pursued:
- stop the progression of myopia or at least slow the process;
- vision correction;
- preventive measures in relation to complications of myopia.
In childhood, the treatment of myopia is as follows:
- vision correction with lenses and glasses;
- medication( droplets dilating vessels and affecting the condition of the fundus);
- physiotherapy treatment;
- gymnastics for the eyes.
In childhood, only a beginner myopia is perfectly treated with eye gymnastics - however, it is necessary to perform exercises regularly, correctly and for quite a long time.It is very important during this period to conduct general restorative therapy - the child should undergo a course of vitamin therapy.
Note: with poorly developed nearsightedness, an ophthalmologist can appoint a child to wear "relaxing" glasses, in which there are weakly positive lenses.There are even computer programs specifically designed to correct vision at the initial stage of violations in childhood.
Vision correction is performed by wearing glasses or lenses selected by a specialist.These methods are unlikely to get rid of myopia, but relieve tension from the eyes, which helps stop the progression of myopia.In addition, the glasses create comfort for the child, they can be worn only for work or viewing objects / images in the distance.
Important: if short-sightedness is innate, glasses are assigned to children at the earliest age - this will help to avoid the development of severe complications, irreversible processes.
The doctor can pick up contact lenses only at the age of 3 years and older - they are really much more convenient than classic glasses: you can go in for sports, swim in the pool or open water, the child sees both front and side vision.If the doctor notes intraocular tension, you can use eye drops Atropine, but their appointment should only be done by a specialist!
Operative intervention is performed only with the threatening progression of myopia, when there is a clear threat of complete blindness.In this case, scleroplasty is performed, but this is done with extremely severe child short-sightedness.
Prevention of nearsightedness in children
To avoid the development of complications of myopia in childhood, the following rules should be kept in mind:
- It is obligatory to undergo an examination at an ophthalmologist once every 3-5 months.
- Periodically, a child must undergo a course of vitamin therapy.
- All appointments of the attending physician must be carried out rigorously.
- The specialist may prescribe such preparations as:
- Nicotinic acid;
- Preparations containing calcium;
- Emopyxin - to prevent the development of dystrophic phenomena;
- Lidase is a resorbable.
If the prevention of myopia in general, before its development, it is possible to prevent deterioration of visual acuity. Doctors recommend:
- Parents follow the child's bearing;
- to control the distance from the book / TV / computer to the eyes - it should be at least 30 cm;
- not allow the child to read lying down;
- to control the level of lighting when reading.
Myopia in childhood is a common occurrence, but it is completely remediable.Correction of vision, competent approach to prevention and accurate adherence to recommendations / appointments of specialists allow avoiding the development of serious complications.
More information about myopia - the causes of childhood myopia, the measures of prevention and treatment of myopia, you will get by viewing this video.About the nearsightedness of children tells the director of the Moscow Research Institute of Eye Diseases named after Helmholtz, doctor of medical sciences, professor Vladimir Neroev:Tsygankova Yana Aleksandrovna, medical reviewer, therapist of the highest qualification category