OrthoK, preventing nearsightedness one night at a time

Have you considered wearing contact lenses at night instead of during the day?  This is a great solution for many children and adults that require contact lenses or glasses to see the world clearly.  This new technology is known as Orthokeratology or OrthoK for short.

OrthoK lenses are a great option for kids if both parents are nearsighted.  This special lens has the ability to slow the growth of the eye, which in turn minimizes the power of the glasses or contact lens prescription during adulthood.

Advantages of OrthoK Contact Lenses:

  • No contact lenses during day – OrthoK lenses are worn while sleeping only
  • Prevents high prescriptions in kids – Important if parents are both severely nearsighted
  • Less dryness due to contact lens wear – no drying of contact lens during daytime
  • No worrying about kids losing contact lenses at school
  • Lower risk of eye diseases such as glaucoma and retinal detachment

How do these special contact lenses work?

The lenses apply a small amount of pressure to the front of the eye to lightly flatten the cornea surface.  When the correct amount of pressure is applied overnight, it provides clear vision throughout the day without the need for glasses or traditional contact lenses.

Who are the best candidates for OrthoK?

Children who have highly nearsighted parents will more than likely also be strongly nearsighted.  If kids (Ages 8-18) are already suffering form nearsightedness, their condition will only worsen over time.  If intervention is taken at a young age, the child will not become as nearsighted, and will also be at a lower risk of glaucoma and retinal detachment throughout adulthood.  Children with a high likelihood of nearsightedness are the best candidates for OrthoKeratology lenses.

Discuss OrthoK lenses with your family Optometrist and see if they are right for your child.


Author: Dr. Brett Arnold

Dr. Brett Arnold specializes in Custom Contact Lens fitting and Scleral Lenses at Suburban Eye Care in Livonia, Michigan. He graduated from Ferris State University in 2010 with a Bachelor's Degree in Vision Science and Michigan College of Optometry in 2014 with a Doctorate of Optometry. http://suburbaneyecare.com

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