An ortho K lens is a specialty contact lens that is worn during the night and alters the front surface of the eye, the cornea, temporarily to correct nearsighted prescriptions. A great analogy for this lens would be braces for your eyes.
Although the effects do not last permanently, some individuals may find that they can have the effects of improved vision with only wearing the lenses a couple times a week. There are a variety of uses for this lens and various indications for which an individual would be a candidate.
Below are some of the most common reasons that orthokeratology may be right for you.
Ortho K Lenses in Children
The benefit of only needing to wear these lenses at night is an excellent reason to consider orthokeratology in children of all ages.
Some kids have difficulty keeping their glasses on and others have hygiene and eye rubbing habits that make daily soft contact lenses a concern.
Being able to supervise the child at night in case anything happens and also observe the insertion and removal process every night can help prevent some of these issues.
Children can experience excellent vision during the day as well as be free of the constraints of glasses and contact lenses when participating in activities or completing schoolwork.
Orthokeratology and Myopia Control
Myopia, or nearsightedness, refers to the condition in which individuals are not able to view distant objects clearly. Children with myopia often progress to higher magnitudes during their adolescent years.
Luckily, myopia control is available to slow down this process. One of the best myopia control practices on the market today is orthokeratology lenses.
High levels of myopia can cause eye health issues later in life, like retinal detachment.
For children that are at risk of progressing to high levels of nearsightedness, orthokeratology serves the dual purpose of slowing down their progression and ultimately decreasing the magnitude of their final prescription while also enabling them to go glasses free during the day.
Considering Ortho K for Sports
Athletes can also benefit from orthokeratology as removing the need for correction during the activity can provide improved comfort and thus performance.
In sports such as swimming, this can be incredibly beneficial for eliminating the need for prescription goggles or disposable contact lenses.
Prescription goggles can be expensive and require the user to have them on even outside of the water for vision correction. Disposable soft contact lenses have the potential to be infected by microbes in the water and can also cause irritation.
Another example would be snow sport athletes such as snowboarders or skiers who often require prescription goggles or contact lenses that can have similar limitations to swimming goggles.
Try Orthokeratology if Regular Contact Lenses Cause Dry Eyes
Those that suffer from dry eye disease are also great candidates for orthokeratology.
These individuals may find that they have intolerance to soft contact lenses and can only wear them for a few hours a day, after which the irritation becomes so extreme that they must remove the lenses.
Orthokeratology is a great option to be glasses-free during the day but still have the visual correction. Wearing the lenses only at night will prevent the need for lenses that disrupt the tear film during the day.