Science is a dynamic field; when it comes to healthcare measures, then there are various developments taking place around the globe. Eyes are the most sensitive organs of the body. With the changing lifestyle and more and more people spending time on laptop and mobile, vision problems are common. Myopia or short-sightedness is a growing problem and orthokeratology has emerged as a popular process to treat it.
What is Orthokeratology?
Orthokeratology or ortho-K is one such process which is transformational when it comes to non-surgical procedure. It is also known as corneal reshaping. This technique is used to design the contact lenses and in reshaping the curvature of the eye to develop a vision. With the help of this, the person with defective vision doesn’t need glasses to have a clear vision. This methodology is known as Ortho-K or corneal reshaping or CR or vision shaping.
Why is Ortho-K Used?
This method used when a person encounters any of the following:
1. To get rid of refractive vision errors, especially myopia. Sometimes, this method is used to correct presbyopia.
2. Children suffering from myopia are also treated with this method.
Key Facts About Ortho-K
- Best for myopia treatment – It is prominently used for those who are suffering from myopia. It makes use of specialized lenses which are also called corneal reshaping contact lenses.
- It is a very old technique – Going by the technique on which Ortho-K functions, it might appear as a new development, but it’s an age-old technique of optometry. Its history takes us back to the 1940s when the eye doctors started to comprehend that glass contact lenses can be helpful in reshaping the eye.
- Ortho-K fittings might not work overnight – To get a perfect fit, you might need to make several visits to the eye-specialists. This will give better fitting and results.
- Kids are good candidates for Ortho-K – Although this technology can be beneficial for anyone who is suffering from refractive errors, kids are good candidates for this. Kids who wear ortho-k lenses overnight, get better results.
- Cost of Ortho-k lenses – Well, this technique requires multiple visits and is a time-consuming process. You will be charged for every visit. The fees of an eye-specialist providing Ortho-k lenses vary based on his/her experience, time and lens. Make sure that you contact different orthokeratology specialists before finalizing one. In Australia, some of the clinics charge $92 for one sitting, while there are others where the starting charge is $186. But this is totally variable.
- You can have LASIK after Ortho-K – This is another important question that pops in the mind of a person going for orthokeratology treatment. So, the answer is yes. If after ortho-k, you wish to go for permanent eye-treatment, you can go for laser eye surgery or LASIK. An important point to note here is that you must stop wearing the lenses for several months so that your eyes go back to pre-orthokeratology shape.
- Ortho-K doesn’t fall under insurance – Remember, Ortho-K is an elective process; which means that this treatment is not covered under most of vision insurance policies. So, before choosing this process, you must consider the cost factor.
Why has This Technique Gained Popularity?
The reason for the growing popularity of this technique is its effectiveness. Did you know that around 1.5 billion people around the world are suffering from myopia and the condition is going to increase by 2020? These whooping figures show that myopia is a growing problem.
People have been using orthokeratology for the treatment of this disease. Moreover, when we compare the cost of glasses and contact lenses with ortho-K, it turns out to be comparatively lesser in the long-run. Hence, this technique is preferred by those who are suffering from this problem.