What is Orthokeratology?
“Ortho” means to correct. Orthokeratology corrects the refractive error of the eye by reshaping the cornea or the front surface of the eye. It is a non-surgical and reversible procedure which involves placing a custom-designed contact lens on the eye surface. The specially shaped contact lens is able to gently “re-shape” the cornea. This is why Orthokeratology is also called Corneal Reshaping Technology or CRT.
Ortho-K lenses are worn while sleeping, giving you clear vision during the day without the aid of glasses or contact lenses.
Orthokeratology can correct refractive errors like near-sightedness (myopia), far sightedness (hyperopia), moderate amounts of astigmatism and can improve near vision after the age of 42 (presbyopia).
Who can use Orthokeratology lenses?
Ortho-K is ideal for children and adults with the following prescriptions:
-1.00D to -8.00D of myopia
+1.00D to +4.00D of hyperopia
Up to -4.00D astigmatism
How does Orthokeratology work?
Your custom-designed Ortho-K contact lenses reshape the front surface of the eye while you sleep. It uses the forces of the eyelid and tear fluid beneath the lens to reshape the top layers of the cornea.
Improvements in vision can usually be seen the next day, with the procedure stabilising after a week. With high myopia over -6.00D, astigmatism and hyperopia the process can take two to four weeks to achieve full correction. Ortho-K does not permanently change the shape of the eye. Your eyes' shape will revert back to their original state within one to four weeks if you stop wearing the lenses
Comfort & Safety
Ortho-K lenses are surprisingly comfortable to wear. Most people comment that they forget they have lenses in after the first week of wear. Similar to disposable soft contact lenses, the main adverse event associated with Ortho-K corneal reshaping therapy is an infection of the cornea. With proper care and maintenance, the risk of inflammation and bacterial infections due to poor hygiene can be minimised.
Who can benefit from Orth-K?
People who play sports - especially contact sports and all types of water sports.
You can enjoy the freedom of playing sports without worrying about your glasses getting damaged or your contact lenses falling out. Ortho-K lenses are only worn at night while you sleep, leaving you with perfect vision during the day on the sports field, court or in the swimming pool.
People working in dusty or dirty environments
Dusty or dirty environments can play havoc with contact lenses and glasses. If you're a tradesman who needs to squeeze into tight spaces or work in dusty work conditions, Ortho-K lenses will allow you to see clearly and get on with the job.
People with dry eyes or allergies
Ortho-K lenses are great if you suffer from allergies or dry eyes and work long hours on the computer or in air- conditioned environments.
People who want freedom from their glasses or day wear contact lenses
Children with progressive myopia
Ortho-K lenses are an excellent option for children with progressive myopia (short-sightedness). Orthokeratology is scientifically proven to dramatically slow, or potentially halt the progression of myopia and can have a positive impact on the long-term health of your child's eye. Wearing Ortho-K lenses only at night gives kids the freedom to run around, play sports and wear fashion sunglasses during the day without worrying about their glasses or contact lenses in the eye.
How do I get started?
A full eye exam is required. Chantelle Brits at Eyetek Optometrist Dainfern specializes in Orthokeratology lens fitting. During your consultation overall health of the eye, as well as vision and corneal shape, will be assessed to establish if your eyes are suitable.