Farsightedness or hyperopia is normal in the Child’s development. For example, when the child is six years old hyperopia of 0.50D is expected. When hyperopia is bigger than the +0.50D but still less than +3.00D chances are higher the child will outgrow hyperopia and have possibly no need for corrective lenses compared to higher farsightedness as the study from Eedy Mezer concludes.
Children with hyperopia greater than +5.00 D will not experience a significant reduction in the power of the refractive error as time passes. However, this data is an investigation of 164 children the long-term outcome of high hypermetropic refractive errors in childhood. The children got categorized into three groups low, moderate, and high farsightedness, and the mean data of each category was viewed.
Looking at individual cases the outcome can of course vary from the data presented in the paragraphs above. This means I in my optical shop saw children outgrow moderate or higher hyperopia but it is less likely. Some people may ask why it is less likely for a child with a higher prescription to outgrow hypermetropia. And the answer is the needed higher rate of reduction in hypermetropic refractive error over time in years. As we grow for a certain time the body has not enough time to outgrow the refractive error.
Is It Normal For a Child To Be Farsighted?
It is normal for children to be farsighted. The younger a child is the more it tends to be moderately farsighted. Children start to outgrow Hyperopia between 3 and 9 months of age. The proportion of infants with hyperopia ≥ +3.00 D decreased from 24.8% at 3 months of age to 5.4% at 9 months. The change in refractive error was not different between boys and girls.
Due to the more flexible eye lens of children they can easily compensate for the refractive error. The rate of change in refractive error between 3 and 9 months of age was closely related to the initial refractive error at 3 months of age of the children. Studies show a linear reduction of farsightedness between the first 6 months of life and age 12 to 17 months.
But outliers with a higher refractive error with hyperopia in excess of +5.00D did not follow this pattern. With higher farsighted children the rate of change was minimal. This was not only the case for higher farsighted children but also for children with no expected refractive error. They can see clearly but they are expected to develop myopia in the years ahead due to the absence of mild hyperopia.
Does My Far-Sighted Child Need Glasses?
In most cases when the farsightedness (hyperopia, hypermetropia) is mild and evenly present in both eyes no glasses are needed. However the refractive error is not the only reason why a child might need glasses. An ophthalmologist will look at the the results of the eye exam performed and will then decide why glasses may benefit your child. Every child needs to be looked at individually.
For example, when the child is farsighted with a mild refractive error of +0.75D in just one eye it might be probably beneficial to wear glasses to ensure the child does not develop a lazy eye.
When the child has typical hyperopia like 0.50D at age six usually no glasses are needed.
Can a Child Be Both Near and Far Sighted?
Children can have multiple refractive errors. This means a child could be nearsighted in one eye and farsighted in the other. The majority of children are nearsighted or farsighted but it is also possible to be both near and far-sighted in one eye. When the child has hyperopia and bigger astigmatism it has both refractive errors in one eye.
Normally an eye converges the light rays to one focal point on the retina. With astigmatism, this focal point gets split up into two separate focal planes. The distance between both planes is astigmatism. The higher the Astigmatism is the bigger the distance between both focal planes. When one plane converges the light rays in front of the retina and the other behind the retina the child is nearsighted and farsighted at the same time in one eye.
How To Tell if Your Child Is Farsighted?
When you see the following points reoccurring at certain activities you should make an appointment at your local ophthalmologist to see if your child is farsighted. This is a list of symptoms of farsightedness.
- The child uses one eye while reading
- Blurry vision when focusing on items up close
- The need to squint to see clearly
- Trouble reading
- Dislike reading
- Head tilt into a certain position
- Short attention span while reading or coloring
- Poor hand-eye coordination
- Rubbing the eyes frequently
As you can see there are a variety of symptoms for farsightedness. Depending on the child and the amount of farsightedness the combination of problems may differ. When the child needs to produce excess muscle tension to compensate for the hyperopia headaches could be one thing the child tells you. But some children do not communicate as much and rather squint more when they read or rub their eyes often and go on.
A shorter attention span can of course linked to a lot of causes. But farsightedness has something to do with increased muscle tension in the eye. And when the child needs to produce more muscle tension as its peers’ fatigue usually sets in earlier.
Farsightedness in children is normal and usually gets outgrown in the early years of life. When it does not get outgrown children these days really like their glasses. I have a lot of younger customers in my optical shop that really likes the relaxed visual experience they get from their glasses. Just make sure as a parent to accompany your child with positivity when the ophthalmologist diagnoses hyperopia and let the child decide what glasses he or she likes.
In my experience this way children have the highest acceptance for glasses.
I wish you a great day.