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Girls' Overall Self-Worth Improves With Contact Lens Wear, Study Shows
Date:6/25/2009

While both boys and girls experience value-added benefits beyond vision correction, girls experience stronger boost in self esteem with switch to contacts from glasses

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., June 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Contact lenses improve the overall self-worth of girls, according to data drawn from a three-year multi-site study assessing the effects of glasses and contact lenses on the self-perception of nearsighted children ages eight to 11 years. The research, a unique collaboration between psychology and optometry, further demonstrates the value-added benefits of contact lens wear beyond vision correction.

"Girls are particularly vulnerable to social and psychological distress during the transitional years of early and middle adolescence and this data suggests that for girls, in particular, a switch from glasses to contact lenses may result in an improvement in self-perception," according to Mitchell J. Prinstein, Ph.D., Professor and Director of Clinical Psychology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and co-author of the Adolescent and Child Health Initiative to Encourage Vision Empowerment (ACHIEVE) Study.

"Research shows that compared with boys of the same age, adolescent girls suffer from low self-esteem. Youth who wear glasses are especially susceptible to a low sense of self-perception," Dr. Prinstein told attendees during a recent meeting of the Society for Behavioral Medicine. "This study demonstrates that an intervention as simple as switching youths' glasses to contact lenses can help boost girls' sense of self-worth and self-efficacy during this stage of their development."

A total of 484 eight-to 11-year-old nearsighted children (59% female) participated in the ACHIEVE study, the largest randomized trial of its kind. In the study, conducted from September 2003 to October 2007 at five clinical centers in the United States, children were randomly assigned
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SOURCE VISTAKON, Division of Johnson & Johnson Vision Care, Inc.
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