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Nearsightedness

Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a condition where the eye sees near objects within a certain range very clearly while distance vision appears blurry at all times. Nearsightedness is one of the most common vision conditions, with an estimated 70 million people in the United States suffering from it. Nearsightedness occurs when the eyeball is too long for the focusing power of the lens and cornea. Nearsightedness creates an overpowered eye that causes images to reach true focus in front of the retina. Nearsightedness tends to run in families – you are especially at risk if both of your parents are nearsighted.

How can I tell if I have Myopia?

Symptoms include distant objects appearing blurry, squinting, and eyestrain. Nearsightedness is often first diagnosed during childhood. A child with nearsightedness may sit very close to the TV or hold books very close to the face when reading. Nearsightedness is usually diagnosed through a comprehensive eye exam.

Will my vision continue to get worse?

Most nearsightedness is diagnosed in children or teens. As the eyeball continues to grow, it’s likely that the nearsightedness will continue to worsen. Nearsightedness usually stops getting worse by about age 16 in women and by the mid-20s in men. Although most cases of nearsightedness usually stabilize, some do worsen with age.

How is nearsightedness treated?

Nearsightedness can be corrected by wearing spherical contact lenses or glasses. Correction requires a "minus" lens to "weaken" the eye optically, permitting clear distance vision.

The shape of a nearsighted eye focuses images in front of the retina, producing a blurred distance vision.

By reducing the cornea's focusing power, spherical contact lenses create a single focal point on the retina where vision is sharpest.

 

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