reader request – growing out of farsightedness

This comes from a post on the little four eyes facebook group.  -Ann Z

I am interested in hearing about stories of success..or even progress, on babies who grew out of their significant farsightedness & do not have to wear glasses anymore…I know it happens, but I don’t hear much about it. I think it would be encouraging to hear!

Ann Z again – this reminds me of an interaction I recently had:  I was at a kid’s gym with Zoe and started talking to some of the parents about kids and glasses.  One woman told me that her two kids wore glasses as toddlers and outgrew them after just a couple of years. I told her it was great news that I was thrilled to hear her story.  And then she asked me what Zoe’s prescription is. It’s +4.25, which falls right in the moderate range. She looked really surprised and said her kids had a prescription of under +1.

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34 responses to “reader request – growing out of farsightedness

  1. Yes. I would like to hear some stories of success, too! Most children are born farsighted and as they grow and develop they become less and less farsighted, as I understand it. So, the story of the lady with a prescription of +1, sounds like they were given glasses when they didn’t really need any? I was talking to a lady in a waiting room at the dentist the other day, who had a teenager with the same eye problems as our Ellie (farsighted with strabismus and amblyopia). She had the same PO as we are seeing with Ellie. She said that her daughter had four (!) surgeries and now only wears one contact in the weaker eye. I was really discouraged that even with four surgeries, she is still having problems. On the other hand, I don’t know the exact details, but I wore glasses for farsightedness when I was a kid, but outgrew them around age 10. Now, I am nearsighted, but only minimally. So, I guess, that’s a success story? When I do come across a true success story, I will definitely post it! Because after all, that’s what we want to achieve and is encouraging to know that success is possible. 🙂

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  2. Corrie, I agree. Either the woman I talked to was wrong about her kids’ prescription, or she got glasses when they didn’t need them, or her kids’ eye doctor was underprescribing, which I’ve heard of doctors doing. I wish I could ask her more questions about that.

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  3. Our opthamologists told us that generally kids with a prescription of +3.5 or less at age three will outgrow their farsightedness. Alas, Sarah’s was a +6.5 at age three and they doubt she will ever outgrow. They also said, that it is common for their prescription to get worse around age five and then start to lessen after that. We were told that usually kids, if they are going to outgrow, will do so around age 12 or 13 when they have their growth spurt and hit puberty.

    As for the +1 prescription, I would think that must be a mistake. Olivia (2), our youngest, had her first big eye check last week and is far-sighted like her siblings (*only* +2.75). The current recommendation for kids her age around here (Nova Scotia) is no glasses unless they need +4 or above. However, Sarah’s glasses were always under corrected by two diopters until last June. (~age 3.5). We were told that babies are more likely to keep their glasses on when their eyes are under corrected!?!

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    • Hi . I just came across this post and wanted to let you know that I found it helpful. We also live in NS and my 3 year old has a prescription of +6.5 with astigmatisms in both eyes. Could you reccomend any pediatric opthamologists in HRM? Thanks 🙂

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      • Hi Rachael,

        Where are you in Nova Scotia? Our son Alex is seen by Dr. LeRoche at the IWK. Their opthomology clinic is wonderful. He was referred there by our regular opthomologist because his case was more complicated than our daughters’. He has had appointments there every four weeks since he was 3.5. (He’ll be nine on Tuesday.) The IWK has also recently opened a satellite clinic at the Cobequid Centre in Sackville and the same orthoptists see patients at both clinics.

        Our daughters Sarah (+6.75) & Olivia (+2.75) go to Dr. Rogers in Hilden. He is excellent as well but is just a general opthomologist, as opposed to a pediatric opthomologist. He was the one who referred Alex to the IWK because he was a candidate for surgery. The orthoptist that works with Dr. Rogers also works in the New Glasgow & Pictou areas. Hope that helps…

        Ann, I should have clarified we were given instructions with Olivia that if we see either eye turning, we are to call and they will give her glasses immediately to try to prevent amblyopia, regardless of what her prescription strength is! So the under +4 rule is only if the eyes are not turning, which hers do not at this point.

        Also, it’s interesting to note that at Alex’s appointment this week, he still prefers the undercorrected prescription he has to his full strength prescription! I find it fascinating as he’s now old enough to tell them whether he likes “1” or “2” better; “3” or “4”…

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  4. That’s very similar to what I’ve heard, bedandbreakfast. Though, I read that if the eyes are crossing, then glasses should be prescribed even for lower prescriptions to really lower the risk for amblyopia. Interesting about kids being more willing to wear glasses if they’re undercorrected!

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  5. Does anyone have any success stories regarding short sightedness. I do know it is supposed to worsen as they get older however sometimes it remains stable which obviously I am hoping for. Paris is -3.75 in her weak eye and plano in good eye. That is fully corrected. I am realising that there are many more children who are farsighted than nearsighted. My fingers and toes are crossed that Paris’s eye does not worsen. She is regarded in the moderate range right now but still that is a big difference between the eyes which I think is the main concern. It s not really how far sighted or nearsighted you are it is the difference in the eyes and therefore the risk of amblyopia.

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  6. Hi,
    I am very new to the world of glasses. My eldest son, almost 4years, started wearing glasses less than two weeks ago. I do not wear glasses and no body in my family has ever worn glasses so I am just starting to understand what all the different numbers refere to. My son is +5.50 in his right eye and +6.50 in his left eye. His left eye is “lazy@ and the doctor said he needed to wear an eye patch. He currently uses the patch for 3 hours a day, two days on the right eye then one day on the left eye.
    I live overseas and am having a hard time getting information about my sons vision in the future. The first doctor I went to seemed so full of doom and gloom that I was super stressed and anxious that my sons vision would only get worse. I went for a second opinion and was told that if my son did not wear his glasses now he would end up cross-eyed but that wearing his glasses would improve his vision and that in time he MAY only need his glasses for reading etc.
    Sorry for the long story, I guess the point of my story is that according to one doctor I’ve seen over time childrens vision should improve if they wear thier glasses.
    I’m sure many of you feel like me, guilty that I did not recognise there was a problem earlier but yet very happy to be able to hand my son his glasses in the morning and know that he can now see much better than two weeks ago 🙂

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    • I read this post and wanted to give my two cents. I live in the US and our son Andrew had pitosis (which is when the eyelid hangs lower due to muscular issues). Due to this condition we had his eyes checked at the young age of 1 and found that he has a slew of vision issues as well – eye crossing, farsightedness, astigmatism… Anyway, we had the surgery when he was just 3 and he had to wear an eye patch over his dominate eye for 2 hours every day along with glasses a few weeks after recovery. He was such a good boy about it and hardly ever missed a day with the patch. After 9 months he has perfect vision with his glasses on. It was quite the accomplishment. We are still working on strengthening his eyes so they stop crossing. But hopefully some day he will be able to leave the house without his glasses on. And the same goes for my two year old that was just prescribed glasses for farsightedness as well. Poor little buggers! Good luck to you!

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  7. Hi, This is new to me to. My daughter has been wearing glasses since March. She turned 4 in June and justed started Atropine drops a week ago. I remember feeing guilty but with children it is hard to tell unless they can explain it to us.

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  8. My little girl, Ryleigh (8 months old) went to the eye dr. last week and we were told she has a +6.5 perscription. We were told to come back at 12months to see if there has been a change. Does anyone have a success story regarding this issue?

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    • Interesting that you were told that. Has it changed? My little girl is 8 months old now and just got prescription for glasses yesterday with +6.0 in one eye and +6.5 in the other.

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  9. Hi there, my little girl, Amoré was tested by Ophtamologist @ 8.5months. She was also +6. But he prescribed a +5 lence for her, maybe to do with the undercorrection you were talking about. We saw Dr for a follow-up just after her first Birthday and he was very happy with her. Wants us to come and see him again a year later. He said she will most probably end up with a +3 lense as a childs sight develops until age 9. I’m hoping for a 0.
    What are you doing to prevent the glasses being pulled off and even worse, my angel has noticed that she can pop the lense out of the frame : ) She has one of those plasticky tipe frames that can’t brake.

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      • Hi Hiroom, Yes her eyes were turning inwards especially when we were moving closer to her from a distance. They were not doing it all the time though, the reason why we waited to have them tested as I noticed it @ 6months already. How old is your baby?

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  10. hi Cecille my son is 20 months…I am so stressed out at the moment he is getting glasses in 15 days waiting for it ..+5 in right eye and +7 in left..hopefully the prescription doesn’t change more than this…is the lens for +5 pretty thick??

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    • Strongs! +5 lense is about 2mm thick their eyes look slightly bigger but its not that noticeable. You’ll find for the first month he’ll pull them off a lot. But he will get used to them and of course realize he can see better with them on. Expect a bit of a personality change. Buy play glasses for his favourite teddy

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      • My 3 year old son has been just diagnosed with +4 in both eyes. It has come as a shock to me as I never noticed anything. The ophthalmologist said he did not have strabismus or lazy eyes and advised us to monitor and see him again in six months. I have been trying to educate myself on all this stuff and must say it is totally overwhelming.

        Does anyone know if the situation will improve without glasses? Or should we consider glasses? Will his farsightedness improve without optical correction? I appreciate any input.

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        • Hello…is anyone there! I’ve just been told my 5 year old needs glasses forever. He’s +3.50 right and +3.00 left eye.nobody in my family has ever needed glasses so everything is kind of freaking me out. I was told his eye balls are smaller than meant to be that’s the reason he’s farsighted, and becoz he’s moderately farsighted he sees everything blurry, close/far/in between. I’m shocked. I’ve never noticed any problem not even now. He can see flys spiders small pictures read numbers in books. I was told it will never improve and he will always have glasses but that he can wear contacts and get LASIK when he’s older. My son does not have any other eye or health problems. Is it true? has nobody ever improved a great deal with moderate farsightedness? Will he be with glasses forever…

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  11. just went in for a yearly exam for my 6 yr old. Both her eyes went down a diopter. to +6, was previous +7.5 so that’s good results in my opinion. I’m hopeful it continues this way. She’s been wearing glasses since 4 and had almost the same RX the last 2 years. This year, we are so happy for improvement!

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      • Moved out of state and went for new eye exam today, and the Dr. Said he can’t believe her Rx has changed so much so quickly. I told him she has been growing a cm a month all year, so maybe her eyes have too, yay! Because she is now down to +5.75 in right and + 4 in left. Interesting as she has many problems with the right side of her body, weakness in limbs, fine motor deficient, etc, all on right. And again it is her left side showing more improvement. But I am so hopeful this will continue. Even if it’s getting expensive buying Rx goggles and new glasses every several months. So thankful. Can’t wait to she how much she can improve by 12 yrs old, she is only 6 now. -UPDATE

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  12. just like kristy’s child, my 2.5yr old’s eyes went down a diopter from +7.5 & +7.0 to about +6.5 in both. been wearing glasses since age 1 so that’s a good improvement. initially had to wear patch (2-3 hours per day for 2 months then tapered off) to avoid/overcome amblyopia.

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  13. My DS turns 4 in a few months, and we just had to take him to a PO. His diagnosis is extreme farsightedness with an RX of +9.5!!!! The doctor was very blunt and made me feel terrible for not bringing him in at 1-2yrs old, but his eyes don’t cross at all! I only took him in because his handwriting isn’t progressing as fast as his classmates at preschool and he likes to get really close to the screen when he’s playing phonics games on my phone. The PO prescribed +5 glasses for now and we go back in 4 months. He said it’s unlikely they’ll get better. DS doesn’t have astigmatism so that’s something.

    Please, someone tell me Dr. Doom and Gloom is possibly wrong about DS never progressing. Needing glasses for the rest of his life (or until he’s an adult and can get LASIK) is fine!!!! But the PO said he might not ever be allowed to drive!!!!!

    – Guilt Ridden Mom in need of hope

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    • Wow, frankly, that doctor has horrible people skills! It is so hard to catch farsightedness in kids before school-age if they aren’t crossing their eyes. You shouldn’t feel guilty at all. You realized something was going on and got him checked out. That’s nothing to feel guilty about!

      (With the caveat that I’m not a doctor and don’t know your son’s specific case) As for his vision going forward, at his age, with that high of a prescription, it’s unlikely he’ll outgrow the need for glasses, and his prescription may not get much lower. But that is still a correctable prescription, which means with glasses (or contacts later on), he should be able to see clearly .

      Please keep us updated on how everything is going!!

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    • Hello there,
      I too am a mom of 4.5 yo who has recently been diagnosed with +8.5 glasses and also has astigmatism. I too was told bluntly by the PO that my son won’t be able to drive and its unlikely his prescription will get better.

      I wanted to know if you have seen progress in your case over last 2 years? I am very concerned about the limited career and social choices my son will have due to his farsightedness.

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  14. I’m so happy to find this page! My son is 29 months and just diagnosed with farsightedness. He is a +4 and +4.5. I am farsighted and have worn glasses since I was approximately 6 years old. We took our son to 2 ophthalmologist to make sure he was correctly diagnosed. I don’t want my child to go through what I had to go through. I was teased a lot growing up and I was sad to hear he inherited my poor vision. I have looked through my sons eyeglasses and they seem so strong. I worry “is his vision really that bad?” poor baby!!! I wonder how they know the prescription is correct when he cannot read an eye chart because he can’t read yet? He’s really good about wearing them. He doesn’t even try to take them off.

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  15. I’m seeing a lot of success stories on this blog about the prescription for far sighted little ones going down as they age. My daughter is 18 months and was just diagnosed at +5.25 in both eyes with slight astigmatism. What are the chances that her vision will get better as she gets older? Her PO told me at 6 months, her first visit, that they usually do…but at this last visit she wasn’t too reassuring.

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  16. Hi everyone. My son is 7 years old and was diagnosed with refractive amblyopia. I feel horrible that i didn’t see this coming. He is a very good student and reads above his grade level(3rd grade level). Now he is prescribed +3.50 for his left eye ( lazy eye) and 0.50 for his right eye ( good eye) I patch his eye 2 hours a day and he works on close activities like coloring, cutting, tracing, crossword search and reading. the doctor will see him after 4 weeks to see his progress….i am so very worried for his vision, especially after reading and searching about amblyopia. Has anyone experienced or know anyone with refractive amblyopia at this age? Thanks in advance Jackie

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    • Hi Jackie,
      There has been a lot of research recently on amblyopia in older kids, and the findings have been quite promising. It used to be that doctors thought that amblyopia couldn’t be treated past age 8, but the recent studies have found that the human brain is quite good at learning new things, and there are quite a few cases of improvement in amblyopia later in childhood and even adulthood. Best of luck!

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  17. Hi Ann Z,
    As I wrote above my son prescription are +3.50 for his left eye ( lazy eye) and +0.50 for his right eye. This is the optometrist prescription. Three days ago we saw an ophthalmologist and he prescribed OD+ 2.75 and OS +4.00.
    My son has a visual acuity of 20/20 however when the ophthalmologist dilated his eye he said that he needs a prescription of + 2.75 on his right eye. I am on dilemma here do i have to see another ophthalmologist?
    Thanks again!

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