Contact lenses are a safe and effective form of vision correction for children, teenagers, and adults, as long as they are worn and cared for properly. More and more children are being fitted for contact lenses than ever before due to the improved contact lens materials and selection of daily disposables. Being a successful candidate for contacts lenses is more of a matter of a readiness and maturity level, rather than an age issue. Successful contact lens candidates are highly motivated to want to wear contacts. Important factors to take into consideration are the child’s personal hygiene habits and their ability to take care of contacts themselves. This applies to any age group.
Benefits of Contact Lens and Eye Care
Contacts lenses can improve peripheral vision and enhance participation in sports and improve vision during daily activities. Wearing contact lenses can help improve self-esteem for children that do not that do not like the way that they look in glasses. However, once contact lenses are prescribed, glasses are important to continue to use to give your eyes a break to help ensure proper eye health. Having non-prescription sunglasses to wear over your contact lenses will also protect your eyes from harmful ultra-violet radiation emitted from the sun and help diminish discomfort from glare.
It is important for both parents and children to understand that they share in the responsibility to wear and care for contact lenses successfully. Choices vary from soft contacts or hard contacts with or without astigmatism. Most common replacement schedules range from daily, bi-weekly, or monthly contacts. Contact lenses are considered a medical device and are not cosmetics. Visiting your optometrist will help determine what contact lens option is best for your children’s vision correction.
Michelle A. Battaglia-Capogna, O.D.