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New Survey Findings: What Do You Need to Teach Parents About Myopia Management?

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Insights into what parents need to learn about myopia management.

Dec. 20, 2023

The Vision Council released a new research report highlighting parents’ awareness and experiences with childhood myopia. The report, Focused inSights 2023: Parental Perspectives on Myopia suggests that there is a significant gap in parental understanding regarding childhood myopia, and ample opportunity for eyecare providers to better educate families about the causes and risks associated with the condition.

The World Health Organization recognizes myopia as a significant public health concern, but survey responses indicate that only two-in-10 parents have heard about the myopia epidemic. Almost three quarters of parents are generally familiar with myopia as a condition, but lack comprehensive knowledge about the rise in childhood myopia and strategies to help prevent children from becoming myopic.

“It is crucial for eyecare providers to proactively educate parents about preventing childhood myopia,” said Alysse Henkel, Senior Director of Market Research and Analytics at The Vision Council. “Spending time outdoors and limiting screen time are well-researched strategies for preventing myopia in children, but it needs to happen before a child becomes myopic, so early awareness is important. Providing more accessible information on childhood myopia and encouraging parents to monitor their children’s vision issues more closely will be key for the prevention, detection and treatment of myopia in future generations.”

Report Highlights: 

  • Two-in-five parents report knowing exactly what myopia is, and an additional one-in-three reports having a general sense of the term.
  • Only one-in-eight parents (13 percent) recognized that lack of outdoor time as a risk factor for myopia onset, while 57 percent cited screen time and genetics as risk factors.
  • Three-quarters of parents that are aware of myopia report they have not seen, read, or heard, something about the childhood myopia epidemic recently.
  • Only 37 percent of parents understand that vision loss is a complication associated with myopia.
  • Three-in-10 parents report they have a child who has been diagnosed with myopia.
  • Three-in-five parents (62 percent) report their child’s eye doctor suggested a treatment plan and a plurality (42 percent) report their child was given bifocal/progressive glasses to manage their myopia.
  • Most parents feel the treatment of their child’s myopia has been effective (83 percent) and easy to comply with (87 percent).

Two in five parents report knowing exactly what myopia is, and an additional one in three reports having a general sense of the term.

This survey was conducted by Morning Consult, on behalf of The Vision Council between November 2–11, 2023, and surveyed 2,209 parents with children 5–16 years old. The interviews were conducted online, and the data were weighted to approximate a target sample of parents based on gender, age, race/ethnicity, education level, region and gender by age and education level. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus two percentage points. A quota was set to collect at least n=500 parents with child(ren) diagnosed with myopia (a total of n=665 respondents were collected among this group).

A one-page summary, along with the full research report, is available in The Vision Council’s Research Download Center as a complimentary download for members of The Vision Council, with a paid option for non-members.

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