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Contacts: Making a Difference for Teens

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Needing to buy eyeglasses is often difficult for a teenager. Young adults cringe at the idea of wearing eyeglasses and looking ''nerdy''. Compared to glasses, children and teenagers who wear lenses feel a significant enhancement in their looks, a newly published report demonstrates. The study results show that starting at the age of eight, pre-teens should be offered the choice of contact lenses. Researchers published the study in the November issue of Eye & Contact Lens, the official publication of the Contact Lens Association.

So why are contact lenses so critical for teens? Young adults are insecure, and they often feel more attractive and accepted if they're not sporting a pair of glasses. Contact lenses may increase teens' self-esteem by giving them a less obvious alternative for their vision needs.

Although teens are frequently fitted with contact lenses, children younger than 13 are usually not offered the choice of contacts, because eye care practitioners and parents don't feel that children have the proper maturity to care for them properly. Actually, with the right instruction, even at age eight, children are as competent at wearing and caring for contact lenses and they should be offered the choice.

Of course before your child chooses lenses you should ask your eye doctor to find out about any possible problems your child might encounter. Our Duvall optometry practice will be glad to assist you to come up with the right prescription for your teenager's contacts.

If your child or adolescent needs vision correction, why not consider contacts? Through something as simple as a contact lens, you can boost your teen's self-esteem. With the large variety of lenses available, you and your eye care practitioner can work with your child to figure out what modality best fits their personality, maturity and lifestyle.