Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Kids with contact lenses like their looks better than kids with glasses

Children wearing contact lenses felt better about how they look, their athletic abilities and acceptance by their friends than did children wearing eyeglasses in a recent study.

The results suggest that nearsighted children as young as 8 years old reap social benefits from wearing contact lenses instead of glasses, researchers say.

In general, eye care practitioners in the United States tend to wait to prescribe contact lenses until children are in their early teens. But nearsighted children often are diagnosed with myopia and receive their first corrective lenses around age 8.

The study was designed to examine the effects of contact lenses vs. eyeglasses on a number of kids’ perceptions about themselves, especially what is called their global self-worth, or how valuable they think they are to society.

The research indicated that children’s global self-worth was not significantly affected by whether they wore contact lenses or eyeglasses. Similarly, the type of vision correction had no effect on how they felt they performed in school or how they perceived their own behavior.

“The effects really seem to be in areas that we would think made sense – how they feel about their appearance, athletic abilities and what their friends think of them,” said Jeffrey Walline, assistant professor of optometry at Ohio State University and lead author of the study.

The research is published in the March issue of the journal Optometry and Vision Science.

The study was conducted at five clinical centers in the United States that enrolled a total of 484 nearsighted children between the ages of 8 and 11. Of those, 237 were randomly assigned to wear eyeglasses and the other 247 were randomly assigned disposable soft contact lenses for the three-year duration of the trial.

Before assigning corrective lenses for the study, the researchers surveyed the participants to determine whether they had low or high satisfaction with the eyeglasses they had been wearing before the study began. This was done to determine whether previous unhappiness with eyeglasses might influence how the children with contact lenses perceived themselves.

“We thought kids who hated wearing glasses would have a lot greater benefit from contact lens wear than kids who thought glasses were perfectly fine,” Walline said. “Overall, across the scale, it didn’t seem to have much of an effect. But what that tells us is that, regardless of what kids think of their glasses, they seem to benefit from contact lens wear in these three specific areas.”

Though the participating children’s global self worth scores increased across the board over the course of the study, there was no significant difference in overall self-worth between the two treatment groups.

However, on average, contact lens wearers reported better perceptions about their own appearance than did kids wearing eyeglasses.

“The largest difference between the treatment groups was for physical appearance, regardless of whether they initially liked wearing glasses,” Walline said. “This indicates that children’s physical appearance self-perception is likely to improve with contact lens wear, even if they don’t mind wearing glasses.”

While children’s perceptions about their ability to play sports varied over the three years, over the duration of the study, in general, the kids with contact lenses felt better about their athletic competitiveness than did kids wearing eyeglasses.

The children with contact lenses also felt they were more accepted by their friends than did those wearing eyeglasses. But over the course of the trial, both treatment groups experienced an overall increase in their social acceptance scores.

One area that was affected by how kids previously felt about eyeglasses was scholastic competence. Children who had disliked their glasses and were then assigned contact lenses for the study ended up feeling more confident about their school performance.

Walline said the study suggests that even young children should be given the option to select contact lenses over glasses.

“Kids, in consultation with parents, should be able to choose what kind of vision correction they want,” he said. “Age should not be the determining factor for whether a child receives contact lenses or eyeglasses. Look at a child’s motivation, abilities, maturity, hygiene, eye size – lots of those factors – but don’t look at age. There are 6-year-olds who can wear contact lenses on their own and there are 25-year-olds who can’t.”

This work was supported by Johnson & Johnson Vision Care Inc. and The Vision Care Institute, a Johnson & Johnson company. The company supplied the contact lenses used in the study.

Co-authors of the paper were Lisa Jones, Loraine Sinnott and Monica Chitkara of Ohio State’s College of Optometry; Bradley Coffey of the Pacific University College of Optometry in Forest Grove, Oregon; John Mark Jackson of the Southern College of Optometry in Memphis; Ruth Manny of the University of Houston College of Optometry; Marjorie Rah of the New England College of Optometry in Boston; and Mitchell Prinstein of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Jeffrey Walline | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>