Any parent who has watched their child squint to see something in the distance knows that this is a problem that needs to be fixed quickly and may be associated with parental guilt. As parents, we want our sons and daughters to be as healthy as possible, so vision problems can be especially frustrating. Are they blurry due to heredity or looking at the computer with too close of a working distance? Many parents feel trapped because they think their only option is to get their children fitted for glasses and contacts. For those whose children don’t fare well with either (breaking, losing, sports issues, etc.) there is another alternative. Plus, studies show that something can actually be done to control further myopia deterioration.
The most commonly known corrective surgery for eyesight is LASIK. Although this technological development is exciting and sexy, LASIK is not recommended for children. One technological advancement many parents haven’t heard of is OCR (or Overnight Corneal Reshaping) and it might just be the fix you’ve been looking for! It’s a simple, corrective therapy that doesn’t require surgery or recovery time. Instead, it involves special lenses that gently reshape the cornea overnight into its optimal shape for clearer vision. The lenses are applied at bedtime and removed upon rising in the morning. Pretty easy!
When it comes to OCR vs. LASIK, there are some important things to consider.
Pros for LASIK
- A permanent solution
- A fast procedure
- Instant results
Cons for LASIK
- Not suitable for children and teens
- Mixed results that are not reversible
- Often creates dry eyes for several months after the procedure
- Many people have problems with night vision glare and/or dry eye problems
Pros for OCR
- Reversible, non-permanent solution
- No surgery
- Minimal effort, the correction takes place during sleep
- Available with low risk to all ages
- You can stop the treatment at any time by discontinuing the use of the lenses
- When used by young children, it can actually prevent myopia from increasing as they age
Cons for OCR
- Patients who cannot comply with hygiene instructions and follow-up care visits may experience discomfort or inadequate treatment
- Correction process that will require purchasing replacement lenses if lost or damaged
- Requires consistent use of the lenses at night for optimal vision
- Needs to have an eye doctor who is specifically trained and equipped to provide this care
If you think you’re ready to start a discussion about OCR, please contact us. We will be happy to tell you more about the procedure and whether or not it’s your best option for improving your vision or the vision of someone you care about.