Child optometrists "shifting to contact lenses"

Child optometrists "shifting to contact lenses"

By Alexa Kaczka

Optometrists who work mainly with children are gradually turning to contact lenses as their preferred method of correcting vision in youngsters, according to a new study.

The report, conducted by the new American Optometric Association (AOA) and surveying 576 optometrists from across the US, showed a gradual shift in optometrists' approach to vision correction as children get older, with 21 per cent noting that they are more likely to prescribe ten to12-year-olds with contact lenses than they were a year ago.

Dr Christine Sindt, chair of the contact lens and cornea section of the AOA, said studies such as these demonstrate that children who need refractive error correction are capable of wearing and caring for soft contact lenses.

"Optometrists will typically evaluate a child's maturity and level of parental support in deciding whether a child is ready for contact lenses," she added.

In other results from the study, three-quarters of optometrists surveyed say that gender does not influence their decision to fit a child with contact lenses, while one in four say they are more likely to fit younger children when they are girls.

by Adrian Galbreth

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