Conclusion regarding my son´s glasses

Hi there,

as some of you might already know, Im trying to help my son with his myopia. His prescription is -1D sphere on both eyes and -1D cylinder also on both eyes.

I measured his eyes and when the light is strong, he can read 20/25, sometimes even 20/20 without any correction. Therefore I decided to keep him without his glasses to see how he goes. I then thought that either he stays without glasses or I will consider it as a zero diopter reset and get him normalised glasses from Zenni after his zero diopter reset.

The teachers in his preschool noticed that he squints his eyes quite a lot when he is doing some work inside the room. Of course he does, there is way less light indoors than outdoors. He squints his eyes also when he watches TV.

That obviously is a sign for me, that he will still need some normalised glasses. We are coming into the summer time soon, so I keep doing with him the Astigmatism exercises that Peter (Astigmatism Assassin) adviced me to do. Thank you Peter, that app you referred me to is great!!! The thing is that we live in Central Europe and the light here is not as strong as in Australia for example where I used to live or in Asia where I used to go for a vacation.

The normalised glasses I ordered for him has this correction:

-0.5D sphere on both eyes and -0.5D cylinder on both eyes

I know, I know, one should not lower BOTH cylinder and sphere at the same time. But he does not go from -1D sphere and -1D cylinder to the normalised, he will go from zero diopter reset to his new normalised. He has been without glasses for 3 weeks now and it will take another 3-4 weeks till his normalised come. I then want to keep him without glasses for additional week or two, so that his diopter reset will be 2 months altogether.

Will that be enough to be safe with his normalised? Or will that upset his visual cortex? I measured him yesterday with my test lens kit and he can see TV quite well with -0.5D sphere and -0.5D cylinder. He is able to read 20/30 on Snellen with this correction indoors - but like I said we have Spring now and the sun is quite weak, that is the downside of living in Central Europe.

I felt a bit guilty about ordering his new normalised, so to be on the safe side, I ordered another pair of glasses today, with his sphere being -1D on both eyes (that means unchanged from his full correction glasses prescribed by his eye doctor) and his astigmatism correction is -0.5D.

In case he cannot deal with -0.5D sphere and -0.5 cylinder correction and he is still squinting, I will give him that -1D sphere and -0.5D cylinder. I will keep doing his astigmatism and AF exercises till September on regular basis now, so that when he starts his school, his normalised will be either -0.5D sphere and -0.5D cylinder or even just -0.5D sphere and no cylinder as that will be corrected with exercises already.

Maybe someone here has similar experience and has lowered both sphere and cylinder after couple of weeks of zero dioptre reset and could maybe give me some advice. I know that no one lives behing my son´s eyes, he needs to try both normalised and we will see what works better, but maybe you might have some practical advice.

Thanks,

Michaela

1 Like

Without being in the middle of the whole situation, I would say this sounds like a thoughtful and (I might add) appropriate plan. And if it does not work quite the way you expect it, you are never stuck to it - you can always make changes to it.

I too have a child that may possibly need to be watched and guided, if the best line she can see is 20/30. So I read your whole post through the eyes of a mother who may have to apply this in real life. It makes sense to me. Let us know how things are progressing.

And kudos to you for standing up for your son, and not letting him be one of numbers in the myopia story.

thank you very much for your reply! I guess it makes sense what you said. I cannot go wrong here, I can always change his prescription if I feel my initial idea does not work.

I will let you know how does my plan progress for sure! I have glued one Snellen in our storage room. There is a very crappy, artificial light there, but it is very consistent. Therefore I have chosen this place to ascertain his future progress. He sees 20/30 Snellen in the storage room. My dream would be that he gets to 20/20 when he starts his school in September but that is more my wishful thinking. But I think 20/25 could be realistic already!

Michaela

In these 2 situations I would let him wear the minimum correction needed to avoid squinting.

1 Like

From what I have been told, children’s eyes change quite a bit at this stage where your son is. The trick is to catch it in time if going down the wrong path, and provide guidance for good habits and ways to deal with the temporary lack of good vision. And you are doing just that. Don’t stress him and you out with time frame goals, but rather build life long habits and knowledge so he does not fall in the myopia trap…

The improvement will come. And hopefully you will be one of the parents that can guide others with real life experience and success points.

1 Like

I think that is a very important point. Just enough blur to stimulate the eye to do what it needs to do. The trick is to find that for someone else other than you, especially when the someone else is 6 years old. :smiley: But that too comes as the child gets a feel for this whole experience.

1 Like

If glasses are worn for real distance vision time only and then removed for close up than 0.25D or even 0.5D overcorrection will not cause an issue. But squinting is a bad habit, changing the shape of the eye.

thank you very much for your points! I dont know how he unlearn to stop squinting? He has a zero-diopter reset at the moment, I have ordered normalised glasses for him which I will then introduce to him for the television and perhaps some indoor activities in his preschool. It is really difficult to help another person with his/her myopia, especially when it is a child. I guess this process is also about slowing myself down and stop burdening myself and my son. I really need to approach it by just creating good habits. But it seems to be working quite well already :-). Every now and then, when I just quickly want to peek onto my phone and put it away immediately, my son sees me and starts shouting:“Mum, stop watching your phone without your (differential) glasses! Now, please look at that tree over there (he is pointing to a tree quite far away from us) for some time to relax your eyes!” :smiley:

1 Like

Like everything else - through practice. :innocent: Reminding him gently when you see him do it: what, why, and how to replace it… Nobody is born educated. :smiley:

1 Like

My approach once I noticed my kid’s eyes changing was to get them readers for close-up work. We’re still homeschooling due to covid, so it hasn’t been an issue (e.g. no going back and forth from a blackboard to a book on the table). But distance details do induce squinting in low-light.

My hope is to minimize progression until my kids are old enough to be able to reverse their myopia using EM techniques (still to young right now). Since myopia progression seems to be due to lots of close-up work, I’m hoping the readers will minimize that.

In your situation, I’d be concerned about extensive close-up time driving myopia, especially if your child wears the normalized lenses for close-up. Holding a book at 33cm can theoretically cause myopia progression up to 3 diopters (the eyes require 3 diopters of accommodation to focus at 33cm), thus extensive closeup without readers could be a factor in progression. It’s unlikely to get as bad as that though, as the more myopic you get, the less eyestrain is needed to hit that focus distance (unless you use normalized glasses while reading). As I mentioned, I have my child using some nice-quality readers (set to the correct IPD) that I insist on being used for all close-up. We’ll see if that’s successful in minimizing progression.

Interesting experiment. Were the kids already myopic? Or no sign of it and you’re doing a preemptive strike?

Slightly. I picked it up when it was 0.25D, and it’s now at 0.75D or myopia. But I immediately bought readers once detected. Since it progressed 0.5D over a year it obviously wasn’t enough, but if I can keep the levels low, then reversing won’t take more than a year or two, at least that’s the hope :slight_smile:

I do have a bit of an update regarding my son´s myopia. Today, we had an appointment with our new ophtalmologist. It was a very friendly and competent woman. She is a private doctor, so quite expensive, but worth every cent. We had a double appointment - she checked the eyes of my son and mine as well. I did not tell her about Endmyopia as although she was quite young, she still performs her medical checks according to what she learned at school and I thought she might be quite sceptical of things like Endmyopia. I used a different approach - I made up that my auntie married a guy couple of years ago who is a former ophtalmologist. I said he has been retired for 10 years now already and does not really like to talk about his previous job, but he could give me some advice and suggestions. I told her, how my uncle feels like it was bad to overprescribe patients. I also said that my uncle thinks that myopia could be improved to certain extent, however he did not meet any patient in his career who was able to cure his myopia completely (I was a bit careful here knowing that as much flexibile as she might wanna be, she will still “go by the books” so to speak). I asked her to try not to overprescribe us but just give us what we need when performing eye examinations.

She performed an examination on my son first and was surprised to find out that I was right and he does not need any glasses at the moment. She also said that the glasses given to him by our previous eye doctor (-1D sphere and -1D cylinder on both eyes) were way too strong. Her result was as follows: right eye: sphere -1D, cylinder +0.25, axis 94, left eye: sphere -1.25D, cylinder +0.25D, axis 96). I think she still overprescribed him a bit, but not as much as our old optometrist. My son has had zero diopter reset for 3 weeks now and seems to be doing quite well without glasses. Depending on which Snellen I choose, his average vision is 20/20-20/30 without any correction. The doctor said she wants to see him in 6 month´s time and prescribe some weaker glasses for him which he will use for blackboard only.

She then did an examination on me and came up with me having -4.25D myopia. I showed her my myopia report taken back in 2018 (just before I started my Endmyopia journey) by my old eye doctor. Back then I had -6.5D. She was quite surprised but said that she believes that everybody is different and some eye training could work for some people. She also mentioned that people could improve their eyes to certain extent but she does not think people could get rid of myopia completely as something like this is not scientifically proven…

I was happy with her answer as I did not expect her to completely go against everything she learned at school. That might have been too richt for her blood. But I gained her trust enough that she said I could keep doing whatever Im doing with my son´s and my eyes. There was one point though where we disagreed with each other. When I tried to mention that I might get him some reading glasses down the track when he improves, she was sort of against it. She said that reading glasses might work well for me but she does not think it works well for children, in fact it could actually backfire and make the myopia worse.

Which of course is a BS, but I did not say anything. She is a friendly and quite open-minded ophtalmologist - at least as open-minded as an eye doctor can be. I did not expect she might buy everything what I tell her, but I am very happy with how it went.

I was also very happy to discover that my son´s astigmatism was down to -0.25D. Our old optometrist whom we saw in March came up with a new astigmatism value being -1.75D. The good thing was that this old optometrist did not suggest to carve this new astigmatism reading into Tim´s glasses. I wouldnt have allowed that anyway. But it is great to know that the astigmatism exercises using great astigmatism app work their magic!

We have 4 months before the school starts. Im pretty positive I will be able to get rid of Tim´s astigmatism completely, as -0.25D is nothing.

For his school I will then get him his normalised being around -0.5D myopia and no astigmatism correction. He will be allowed to use his glasses for blackboard only. The funny thing is that today, a parcel from Zenni optics arrived with glasses. These glasses have -0.5D myopia and -0.5D astigmatism. They were meant to be for Tim when he starts his school. But looking at it, he will not need any astigmatism at all.

For the first couple of months, I will probably not introduce reading glasses to him for close-up work. I think it will be enough for him to have his normalised for blackboard. Once he improves even a bit more and gets used to the school, I will then take his normalised for blackboard away and will give him reading glasses. I would not want to confuse him with having 2 sets of glasses. He will probably have quite a lot on his shoulders with his school work, so when it comes to repairing his eyes, I wanna keep it simple for him.

I hope I could improve his eyes even more before he starts his school…but we will see.

1 Like

I love this!!

I am happy to hear your positive update from the new ophtalmologist. I am sad that you still felt the need to fabricate a story though…
I thought you had decided to order the -1 for him, maybe I am remembering wrong. Anyways glad to hear you are sorting it.

1 Like

Lloydmom, I did not fabricate a story to her. That was with the old one - I wanted to fabricate a story regarding the atropine drops with my old optometrist. I dont need to do that anymore as Im having a new eye doctor who is very open-minded. She understands I dont want to give him the atropine drops.

When I started our Endmyopia programme with my son actively - participating in AF etc., I measured his eyes with my test lens kit and ordered -0.5D sphere and -0.5D cylinder as he could see 20/20 in these test glasses. But then I felt guilty as that was against the Endmyopia rule that one should not reduce both sphere and cylinder. So I also ordered another set of normalised from Zenni, -1D sphere and -0.5D cylinder. Both glasses arrived yesterday and the funny thing is that in the last 3 weeks, Tim´s visual acuity improved so much (he also has had a zero diopter reset for a month now) that he will not need any normalised now! I wanted to get it for his squinting, but he does not seem to squint anymore in his preschool. It is amazing how zero diopter reset could even improve visual acuity - at least in the case of children.

I will give him normalised though, when he starts his school in September. But till then we will work on his astigmatism which is now being -0.25D (according to your new opto), so he his normalised for blackboard at school will be as low as -0.5D sphere and no cylinder I reckon.

But this opto is great, so far I was able to be totally honest with her regarding my son´s “eye therapy”. I just did not mention Endmyopia but said that I do have some tips from my uncle, who is a former ophtalmologist.

Like I mentioned, she was not happy with my idea of getting reading glasses for Tim down the track, but I will still work on that to convince her :-D.

1 Like

Your son’s story is a reminder for everyone that

  • small kids’ eyes react differently and adapt quicker to changes
  • this is true both ways, when adapting to unnecessary corrections and when adapting to normalised corrections. It is a dangerous tool in their hands with not enough info on the dangers of it
  • optos so much follow routine by now that they miss to notice the age related different adaptation skills :worried:
2 Likes