Far sight or hyperopia is an eyesight condition that affect about 8% of school age children. Usually hyperopia does not progress to any significant degree. The problem with some farsighted children is that they spend a lot of energy focusing at the near so they develop eye-strain, and as a consequence they get headaches when reading. In most cases children do not know they are farsighted so they will develop coping strategies such as avoiding to read. Research indicates that many children with reading and learning problems are also hyperopic.
Children have a focusing range of up to 60 diopters, meaning that they can focus on things as close as 10 cm and see objects at a distance equally clear. Hyperopia develops when the child naturally prefer to see things at a distance then making the eyes focus close up become strenuous after a while.
The common approach to this is to fit the child with plus lenses. This is done in order to relieve the eyestrain for close up work. The lens move the near point closer.
However, plus lenses is not the only way to relieve eyestrain.
There are two schools of thought when it comes to treating hyperopia in children. One group of eye care professionals prescribe plus lenses because they believe that if hyperopia is left untreated it may lead to serious problems like ambliopia (lazy eye) or strabismus (wandering eye). Further more, childrens eyes are often tested using cyclopic eye drops which paralize the eyes focusing system and often revel severe hyperopia. Then lenses are then perscribed according to the measurement uptained under the influence of drugs.
The problem is that plus lenses, the stronger the power the worse they are. Research shows that fitting plus lenses will stop the natural ammetropication (balancing of the vision) which gradually reduce hyperopia during the first 10 years of life.
No need to fit plus lenses on farsighted children
The other group do not want to put plus lenses on children, even with up to +7 diopters of hyperopia. The reason is that children has sufficient focusing (accommodation) range to compensate. For example, the American Optometrist Association do not recommend that plus lenses are fitted on children with less than + 5 diopters if there is no sign of amblyopia or strabismus. They also say that measurements can be done perfectly well without putting drugs into the eyes of children.
The Magic eyes vision training approach celebrate the child's excellent vision and simply teach the child how to relax the eyes. The child is encouraged to look the the smallest details they can see as close as possible. "Go look the ants in the eye."