Myopia Control at BayState Eye Center

in Mansfield and Plymouth, MA

What is myopia?

Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, causes vision to be blurry far away without glasses. Typically, the eye is too long, resulting in blurry vision. Other factors like the shape of the lens or cornea can contribute to myopia. Traditionally, myopia has been corrected with glasses or contact lenses.

Why does my child need stronger glasses every year?

Myopia typically develops around age 8 and progresses for 10-15 years. Risk factors that increase the risk of developing myopia and rate of progression include:
-parents with myopia
-young age when myopia first diagnosed
-higher degree of myopia when first diagnosed
-certain types of focusing or eye coordination weakness
-race (Asian and Hispanic higher risk than Caucasian and African American)
-more hours of near work and holding work too close
-decreased time spent outdoors

Why should we try to slow down the progression?

High myopia increases risk for glaucoma, cataracts, retinal detachments and atrophy. The goal is to decrease the progression of myopia for a better visual outcome, and to hopefully decrease the risk of these sight-threatening complications.

What are some treatments that can help decrease the rate of progression?

Orthokeratology (Ortho-K)

These are contact lenses worn during sleep that gently reshape the cornea to correct vision. This temporary reshaping provides clear vision all day, which eliminates the need for glasses or contact lenses. This treatment corrects vision in a way that has been shown to slow the progression of myopia by about 50%. Some patients do not progress once this treatment is started.

Soft Multifocal Contact Lenses

Soft contact lenses are worn during the day to correct vision and to help slow the progression of myopia by approximately 50%. This type of contact lens is traditionally worn by adults to help them read clearly and see far away. In kids and teenagers, they correct vision in a way that helps to slow the growth of the eye.

How do I find out if my child is a candidate?

In your child's yearly routine eye exam, the doctor will provide a detailed evaluation to see if your child is a candidate and what option to proceed with. A detailed evaluation will decide which of these options would minimize progression as much as possible.

For the evaluation, please bring:
1. Your child's current glasses
2. Records from any previous eye doctors (unless all exams were done here)
3. A detailed family history including glasses or contact lens prescriptions for parents and siblings
4. Sunglasses. We will be using a dilating drop that will make the eyes sensitive to light for approximately 24 hours. Vision may also be blurry up close while dilated during this time period.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please feel free to call us at 508-339-7600.


Orthokeratology (Ortho-K) is a non-surgical procedure using specially designed contact lenses to gently reshape the eye to correct vision. The custom contacts are worn during sleep and removed in the morning, providing clear vision during the day. This eliminates the need for glasses and contacts.

Ortho-K is most commonly used to correct myopia (nearsightedness), but can also correct hyperopia, astigmatism and presbyopia. This is also a good option for current soft contact lens wearers who have discomfort with their contacts due to allergy, dry eyes or dusty work environment. Many people who are active in sports or other activities love the freedom from glasses, contact lenses and sports goggles.

One big advantage is that Ortho-K has been shown to slow myopia progression in children and teenagers. Between the ages of 8 and 15, myopia can increase rapidly. This increase in nearsightedness increases the risk of sight-threatening conditions such as retinal detachments, cataracts and glaucoma. Studies show that using Ortho-K can dramatically slow down progression of myopia and even arrest it in certain patients.

When first starting Ortho-K, vision will dramatically improve after one night of wear. It can take up to a couple weeks of wearing the lenses to get to the full correction. We will see you for follow-up visits during this process. Once stable, most people need to wear the contact lenses nightly to retain the benefits. The doctor can determine if you are a good candidate for Ortho-K with a thorough eye exam.

We use Paragon CRT (Corneal Refractive Therapy) lenses, which are a type of Ortho-K.

Paragon Vision