What Are Ortho-k Contact Lenses?

What Are Ortho-k Contact Lenses?

What Are Ortho-k Contact Lenses?

What Are Ortho-k Contact Lenses?

Myopia or nearsightedness is a refractive error that affects many people worldwide. It occurs when light entering the eye focuses in front of the retina instead of on it due to an elongated eyeball. It results in distant objects appearing blurry, while close-up objects remain clear. Myopia can affect individuals of all ages.


Traditional methods of correcting myopia include eyeglasses and regular contact lenses. Now, there is a revolutionary treatment option called ortho-k or orthokeratology. It offers a unique and ideal approach to managing myopia.



How Ortho-k Works 


Ortho-k contact lenses are specially designed gas-permeable lenses worn overnight. The lenses gently reshape the cornea, the transparent front part of the eye, while you sleep. Ortho-k lenses flatten the cornea by applying a controlled amount of pressure, reducing the refractive power and allowing light to focus on the retina.



Advantages of Ortho-k for Myopia 


Ortho-k lenses correct vision without daytime wear. You wear them overnight and enjoy clear vision during the day without needing glasses or contact lenses. It benefits individuals who lead an active lifestyle or participate in sports.


Ortho-k shows promise in slowing myopia progression, particularly in children and teenagers. Experts suggest that it may help control axial elongation, a significant factor contributing to myopia progression.


Ortho-k is noninvasive, reversible, and nonsurgical. Your cornea will gradually return to its original shape, but your myopia will resume if you discontinue using ortho-k lenses.



The Ortho-k Fitting Process


The ortho-k fitting process involves a comprehensive eye examination. Your eye care practitioner will perform a thorough evaluation of your eye health to determine your suitability for ortho-k. They will then conduct corneal topography or mapping to measure your cornea shape and curvature. The information helps in customizing the ortho-k lenses.


Your eyecare practitioner will provide you with trial ortho-k lenses to wear overnight. These will allow you to experience the effects of ortho-k and assess comfort and vision improvement.


Regular follow-up visits are essential to monitor the progress of your ortho-k treatment. They help guide necessary adjustments to the lens fit and ensure your eye health remains optimal.



Safety and Hygiene Considerations


Ortho-k lenses require proper care and hygiene to minimize the risk of eye infections or complications. It is crucial to follow the instructions provided by your eye care practitioner. Follow their guide regarding lens cleaning, disinfection, and replacement schedules. Regular checkups are vital to monitor your eye health throughout the ortho-k treatment. 



Is Ortho-k Suitable for Everyone?


Ortho-k can be an excellent option for many individuals with myopia. However, it may not be suitable for everyone. Your eye care practitioner will determine if ortho-k is a viable treatment option for you by assessing your myopia severity, corneal shape, and eye health.



Potential Side Effects and Risks 


As with other contact lenses, ortho-k carries a small risk of side effects or complications. These include dry eyes, glare, or halos around lights. Individuals may experience temporary vision changes and discomfort or irritation during lens wear. However, these side effects are mild and tend to resolve as your eyes adapt to the lenses.


For more about ortho-k contact lenses, contact Inland Family Optometry at our office in Chino or Rancho Cucamonga, California. Call (909) 345-6100 or (909) 345-9809, respectively, to book an appointment today.

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