Myopia Control Eye Drops

Atropine eye drops have been used for various vision disorders in children for many decades. Atropine is thought to send a chemical signal to the sclera (the white of the eye) to decrease its rate of growth, thereby slowing the increase in myopia or near-sightedness. The drops are painless and only need to be used once a day.

Atropine drops with a concentration of 1% have been shown to reduce myopic deterioration by about 90%. Unfortunately, one drop of 1% Atropine will also fully dilate a child for about 10 days, making them very sensitive to light and unable to read without bifocal glasses. Fortunately, 0.01% Atropine drops cause very little pupil dilation and no discernable change in near vision and will reduce myopic deterioration by 55%.

Of course, the drops do not actually compensate for your child’s myopia, so glasses or contacts will still be necessary. However, this is an excellent alternative for children who are apprehensive about using contact lenses. Using the drop everyday allows them to adjust to being touched around their eyes while also controlling their myopia. Often children who do not want to wear contact lenses will use the drops for 6 to 12 months and as a result become much more amenable to contact lens wear at their next appointment.

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