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Myopia Matters for This Mom & Son

By Essilor News

By Meghana Dhall, Associate Director, Wholesale Marketing, Essilor of America

This holiday season, I’m thankful for the fact that my family has access to vision care and correction. Because I work at Essilor, I think it’s safe to say that I have a greater awareness than many parents about the importance of regular, comprehensive eye exams for myself and my DRAFT children. Yet even with this knowledge, I was surprised to learn that myopia, or nearsightedness, affects 42 percent of Americans between the ages of 12-54. My 15-year-old son Angad is one of the millions of people who is myopic.

Angad got his first comprehensive eye exam at age three. Although he wasn’t exhibiting any signs of myopia such as squinting or sitting too close to the TV, I took him because I firmly believe this is what every parent should do. At age five he was diagnosed with poor vision and has been wearing eyeglasses ever since. Even though Angad can see without his glasses, he can’t see clearly and for him, this means he can’t see at all. The first thing he does in the morning is put them on and then he fully wakes up. For a teenager who rarely remembers anything, he is diligent about wearing his glasses first thing every morning! I also have an 8-year-old daughter, and we all have our eye exams together every year. It’s very comforting to know that I have access to comprehensive eye care and that there are solutions available, especially for my kids. Children learn the best visually and if they can’t see clearly, that can create problems for them in school and in other areas of their lives.

Because I'm so passionate about early eye exams, I'm glad to share my experience and my son's experience as a way to encourage other parents to start taking their children for regular eye exams at a young age, especially with the prevalence of myopia. I know that later in life, children who are myopic have an increased risk for sight-threatening vision issues which can lead to blindness. That’s one reason I’m glad I discovered my son’s myopia early and why I hope other parents will also commit themselves to ensuring their children have the best vision possible.