Myopia is often diagnosed in children 8−12 years old and may worsen during teen years. Students with myopia may have trouble seeing their teacher and lessons at the front of the classroom. They may also find it difficult to fully participate in sports and other activities that require seeing objects clearly from a distance.
The National Eye Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, offers these tips to help.
Know the symptoms. Headaches, eyestrain, squinting, and difficulty seeing distant objects are signs and symptoms of myopia.
Encourage your kids to speak up. Catching myopia early and introducing treatments—typically, eyeglasses or contact lenses—can help make sure your child gets the most out of school. Encourage your kids to speak up if they are having trouble seeing. Ask your children if they can see the board clearly during class.
Get teachers and coaches involved. Ask your child’s teachers and coaches about signs of myopia; for example, if they’ve noticed your child squinting or struggling to see things at a distance.
Spend time outdoors. There is evidence that increasing time outside may reduce risk for myopia, but more research is needed to understand the connection.
If your child is experiencing the symptoms of myopia, schedule an appointment with an eye care professional.