Back to School is a stressful time for kids of all age, but especially for the teenagers and pre-teenagers lovingly referred to as teens and tweens. With expert tips from Dr. Mitchell Cassel and optometrist and owner of Studio Optix in New York City, back to school for teens and tweens who wear glasses and contacts can be a success.
I had a chance to discuss these expert tips with Dr. Cassel and he offered wonderful advice for teens and tweens who wear glasses and contacts.
Sometimes, teens and tweens will opt out of wearing contacts because they can be difficult to get in. Dr. Cassel had great advice for making this task easier. “Before you insert your contact lenses, make sure your hands are clean prior to insertion.”
“Wash them and air dry your hands with a lint free towel. Place the lens on your index or middle finger on the dominant hand and immediately lift the contact lens off and wipe your finger, to prevent the lens from sticking to your finger.”
“Pull down the lower lid with your middle or ring finger of the same hand and use your opposite hand to lift open the upper lid. (Inserting your lenses in front of a mirror is helpful so that you can look straight ahead.) Gently open your upper and lower lids and insert the lens.
I’d always heard that contacts weren’t always a good idea for children and could have negative effects. Dr. Cassel set the record straight for me saying, “Contact lens wear is a decision that should be left up to the individual patient and doctor to identify how responsible a child might be for contact lenses (some may be as young as eight years old.)”
“A contact lens is a medical device that should be handled carefully. It is a myth that teenagers cannot wear contact lenses and there are no major concerns stemming from wearing contact lenses if they are handled and cared for properly.”
“It can be difficult to know when to discard a lens if they are designed for wear for more than one day, especially for teenagers who may not recognize the consequences from poor hygiene and the safety concerns of sleeping with contact lenses. For those who need a bit of help remembering when to remove/insert lenses or schedule their annual eye exam, check out ACUMINDER, which is a great free reminder tool.”
“An automatic daily replacement of contacts gets any patient into a routine, like brushing your teeth, which really makes a difference in preventing eye health problems (corneal abrasions, ulcers, red eyes, eye irritation, dryness, etc). 1-DAY ACUVUE® MOIST Brand Contact Lenses is one of my favorite lenses to maximize comfort and convenience. A great resource to learn more about how to properly wear and take care of your lenses is “Healthy Vision & Contact Lenses.”
Some teens and tweens would love to wear contacts but for some reasons aren’t able to or a parent would prefer they not. I asked Dr. Cassel if he had any advice for those kids. “It’s important to consult with your eye care professional to determine why they might have concerns with the child wearing contact lenses.”
“With daily disposable lenses, they really open up a great opportunity for many patients, especially teenagers who have an active lifestyle. Daily lenses eliminate the need for caring for contacts with solutions; they provide same day comfort and are a great way to maximize your vision (depending on your prescription for sports) and maximize your look!”
With laser surgery being advertised all over the television, I asked Dr. Cassel if this type of surgery would be appropriate for out tweens and teens. “Laser surgery is not recommended for teenagers because the eye is continuing to develop with the rest of the body, with vision typically stabilizing in our 20s.”
“According to the FDA, they prohibit Lasik surgery for those who are not yet 18 years of age, and most reputable doctors will wait at least until the age of 20. An eye care provider can determine when the appropriate time might be; typically after having one or more consecutive years with the same prescription, and no corneal eye diseases.”
Back to School success for our children, especially those in or close to their teenage years. Providing them with routine eye care and establishing the care with an eye care professional goes a long way in not only promoting good eye health but also in the child’s self-esteem.
The above is the sole, professional opinion of the author and not representative of nor affiliated with any advertiser, manufacturer, company or public relations firm. The author is not responsible for any effects, positive or negative from using the above product.
Medical information above is for informational purposes. It is not intended to take the place of medical advice from medical professionals.
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