Orthokeratology, sometimes called Ortho K or corneal molding, is a non-surgical, reversible treatment for nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. Ortho K involves wearing specially designed, rigid gas-permeable contact lenses overnight in order to eliminate your need to wear corrective lenses during the day. Think of Ortho K like wearing a retainer for your eyes.
How Does Ortho K Work?
The surface of your eye, called the cornea, is soft and malleable. This portion of your eye is responsible for focusing light toward the back of your eye, the retina. If you suffer from myopia, hyperopia, or astigmatism, your cornea cannot focus light properly, which results in blurry vision.
The Ortho K mold gently and painlessly reshapes your cornea while you sleep, allowing your eye to focus light correctly during daytime activities and eliminating your need to wear glasses or contacts. It can also halt the progression of myopia in children.
Ortho K is not permanent. If you decide to stop wearing the molds at night, your cornea will return to its original shape and you will need to wear glasses or contacts again. This makes Ortho K a great alternative for patients who do not wish to receive surgical treatment for their eyes.
Who Can Benefit from Ortho K?
- Children whose myopia is worsening
- Those who are unable to wear contacts due to allergies
- Those who suffer from dry eye, making it uncomfortable to wear contacts
- Children and adults who participate in sports where it is difficult to wear glasses or contacts
- Adults whose jobs make wearing glasses or contacts difficult or who sit in front of a computer screen for long periods of time
- Anyone who dislikes wearing glasses or contacts
- Children and adults who cannot or don’t wish to receive refractive surgery
The Ortho K Exam
If you are interested in Ortho K, Advanced Eyecare Center will perform a couple tests to determine if you are a good candidate. First, we must evaluate the health of your eyes by examining your retina and cornea. Then, we map your cornea to understand its shape and size. This will help us create a mold that is unique and effective for your personal eye shape.
When you receive your lenses, we instruct you how to use and care for them, and we ensure the lenses are a perfect fit for your eye. For the first few weeks, we will continue to monitor the health of your eyes and the effectiveness of your Ortho K lenses.