OPSM optometrist discusses the prevention and management of short-sightedness

September is Myopia Action Month Myopia Profile, the internationally trusted clinical myopia management information center for eye care professionals (ECPs), announced its launch of Myopia Action Month to channel myopia awareness into action. Taking place across September this year, the inaugural event will bring four-weeks of global education, industry collaboration, and encouragement to ECPs to empower them to take effective action against the disease. The global initiative is sponsored by founding partners CooperVision, EssilorLuxottica, and Johnson & Johnson Vision.

Within the next 30 years, more than 50% of people are estimated to become short-sighted1 and require glasses to see in the distance. Children who are short-sighted often progress at a more rapid rate than adults who are short-sighted. This means that they may spend more time with blurry vision as their prescription progresses beyond the power of their glasses, and that their glasses need to be updated more regularly. Higher levels of myopia (short-sightedness) are associated with increased risk of serious eye conditions such as tears in the retina, macular degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma2.

OPSM Optometrist, Kirby Phillips, wants to raise awareness for short-sightedness this September during Myopia Action Month. “I recommend myopia control treatment to all children who are at risk of developing progressive short-sightedness,” Kirby says.

Here are three things she recommends for the prevention and management of short-sightedness.

  1. Take your child to regular optometrist appointments. The optometrist can identify the presence of myopia and whether it is likely to progress. 1 in 5 children has an undetected vision problem3, so regular checks with the optometrist are vital.
  2. Encourage your child to spend plenty of sun-safe time outdoors. Time outdoors in natural light is extremely important for the development of children’s eyes4.
  3. Limit near activities such as reading and tablet use. Research has shown that higher levels of near work are associated with an increased risk of myopia5.

Book an eye test based on your child’s needs at opsm.com.au



1Half the World Short Sighted by 2050. Brien Holden Foundation (2016).

2Myopia, an underrated global challenge to vision: where the current data takes us on myopia control. Holden et al. (2013).

3Childrens Vision. Good Vision for Life (2019).

4Can Devices Increase The Risk of Myopia in Children? Essilor (2022)

5The Association between near work activities and myopia in children. Myopia Profile (2021).