Children’s Eye Health: Contact Lenses, Not Glasses May Be Better Option for Kids

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Kids who wear contact lenses rather than glasses enjoy better vision-related quality of life.  A new study published in Optometry and Vision Science reports that in the children who participated in the three year study fared better regarding their feelings about appearance and participation in athletics if they wore contacts.  In particular, children over age 10 experience the greatest improvement in quality of life.

According to Jeffrey J. Walline, O.D, Ph.D., Ohio State University College of Optometry and leader of the Adolescent and Child Health Initiative to Encourage Vision Empowerment (ACHIEVE) Study, “The growing body of research in children’s vision correction continues to demonstrate that contact lenses provide significant benefits to children beyond simply correcting their vision. This study showed considerable improvement for contact lens wearing children 10 years or older in areas of appearance, participation in activities, and satisfaction with vision correction, and it remained or improved over three years.”

Though it is often assumed that glasses are easier to handle than delicate contact lenses, children were happier to work with the contacts than pairs of glasses.  The availability of daily disposable lenses seems to have made the process less troublesome for kids.  It removes the worry over the loss and breakage of eyeglasses.

Researchers “advise parents and eye care practitioners to look beyond the visual benefits” when deciding how to best correct vision problems in children.

This study received partial funding from Johnson and Johnson.