Cost of myopia in Singapore?
Guess what is the estimated cost of optical correction of myopia in Singapore? According to WHO report in 2016, the annual direct cost for Singaporean is estimated at US$755 million. Hence, cost of eye care will likely to increase if Singaporean children start myopia at younger age.
Cost is not just on financial. One of the studies in Singapore reviewed myopia associated with visual impairment affects the health-related quality of life in adolescents aged 11 to 18 years. As a result, visual impairment maybe the cost of vision loss that cannot be corrected by eye glasses. Best corrected visual acuity can be worse than 6/12.
Common visual impairments in young children are as follows:
1. Ocular Albinism
Albinism involves the absence or reduction of pigment in the eyes, skin, and hair. Ocular albinism results to poor vision, light sensitivity, nystagmus, and strabismus.
Nystagmus is an involuntary, rhythmic side-to-side or up-and-down eye movement that often accompanies other visual disorders.
Strabismus, or “crossed” eye, is a a eye-muscle system defect. One of the eyes gets misaligned or do not move normally.
Pressure against the optic nerve and compression of the blood vessels of the eye may indicate glaucoma. Glaucoma is an eye disease causes permanent and irreversible vision loss.
5. Retinal Detachment
Retina can be lifted or pulled away from the wall of the eye. Retinal detachment will cause permanent vision loss if not treated properly. High myopia is usually associated with retinal detachment.
Cataract is a clouding of crystalline lens. The crystalline lens loses its transparency that leads to visual impairment. Cataracts are commonly due to aging, can be from birth, trauma or radiation exposure.
Visit your optometrist immediately if your child experiences as follows:
1. Watery and #redeyes.
2. Droopy eyelids.
3. #crossedeyes when looking at different directions.
4. Frequent eye rubbing.
5. Eye pain and itchiness.
6. Likes to sit close to TV.
7. Dislikes reading.
8. Avoid digital work in or after school.
9. Unable to complete assignments.
10. Poor academic results.
Author and photo source by SG optometrist, Chua Yee Leen.