Is Your Child Old Enough For Contact Lenses?
Do you remember how old you were when you learned to drive? How about when you got your first cell phone?
Many of us hit these milestones at different ages as we were growing up, but when it comes to contact lenses, how old is “old enough?”
So What Is The Right Age For Contact Lenses?
To answer this question simply, there isn’t a precise age when children are recommended to start wearing contact lenses. Some start as early as six years old while others wait until later in their teens. In fact, some infants are even fitted with contact lenses to correct congenital cataracts or other eye problems present at birth. Your child’s maturity level is far more important when making this decision than age alone.
Responsible Children Are More Prepared For Contacts
When your child begins to express an interest in contact lenses, think about how they handle their other responsibilities when making your decision. For instance:
- Do they have good personal hygiene and grooming habits?
- Do they keep their room clean?
- Do they follow through with household chores and complete homework on time?
If so, they are likely good candidates for contact lenses! Children who often need reminders to keep things clean and follow good hygiene practices may not be ready for the responsibility of wearing and caring for contact lenses.
Contact Lenses Provide Kids With Many Benefits
Aside from no longer needing to worry about childhood mishaps like lost or broken glasses, contact lenses offer many benefits.
They offer better optics.
This is especially true of gas permeable lenses, which allow clearer vision than traditional glasses lenses tend to offer.
They are good for sports.
Not only do contact lenses eliminate the fear of breaking your glasses playing sports, but they reduce the risk of injury due to broken frames and shattered lenses. They provide better peripheral vision too which can improve performance on the field.
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They can improve a child’s self-esteem.
Many children don’t enjoy the way they look in glasses. Some feel unattractive or simply just different from their peers at school. Wearing contact lenses can improve their personal perception of their appearance and boost their self-esteem. This can lead to better grades and even better friendships.
They may help stabilize your kid’s prescription.
Many studies show that nearsighted or myopic kids don’t increase in prescription as rapidly when they are wearing multifocal contact lenses as compared to regular contacts or glasses. Dr. Yin recommends fitting kids who are showing yearly increases in prescription into multifocal soft contact lenses. With very young kids, we’ll teach the parents how to insert and care for the contacts. We’ve had great success in nearly stopping the increase in myopia (nearsightedness) in many children who previously were getting worse every year or more often.
We Love Helping Our Patients At All Ages
Growing up brings plenty of choices and opportunities and we’re with you every step of the way. If your child is beginning to show an interest in contact lenses, come in and talk with us! We can help you determine if your child is a good candidate and when would be the best time for them to switch to take this step.