When you have myopia or are short-sighted means that close-by objects appear clear to you, whereas faraway objects appear hazy or blurry. For example, you may be able to clearly see what is in front of you but find it tough to see objects at a distance.
You would develop myopia or shortsightedness when your eye elongates or grows longer than expected or when the shape of your cornea (transparent layer protecting the eye) is too steep. As a result of these, light focuses in front of the retina (light sensitive tissue at the back of the eye) instead of directly on it, resulting in distant objects seeming blurry.
Depending on the level of shortsightedness or myopia, you might not require glasses or contact lenses for viewing objects up close and may require them for viewing at a distance. Some people might require prescription solutions all the time, for distance and near.
Some risk factors may increase the odds of developing shortsightedness, such as:
The prevalence of shortsightedness has been increasing in recent years.
More than 2 billion people worldwide have shortsightedness or myopia, based on a World Health Organization (WHO) report. The WHO estimates that half of the global population will be nearsighted by the year 2050 should contemporary trends persist.
If left uncorrected, shortsightedness can escalate to higher levels, known as high myopia which is a major cause of vision loss. High myopia raises the risk of diseases such as retinal detachment and macular degeneration which are threatening to vision.
Presently, there is no cure for shortsightedness. Shortsightedness can typically be completely corrected with glasses, contact lenses or LASIK. While prescription eyeglasses are the most prevalent treatment for shortsightedness or myopia, contact lenses are a convenient alternative.
Farsightedness, also known as hypermetropia, is the opposite of shortsightedness where nearby objects appear blurry due to an eyeball that is too short, causing light to focus behind the retina.
The most marked difference between shortsighted and farsighted vision happens when objects appear in focus. Shortsighted people see nearby objects more clearly, while farsighted people see distant objects more clearly.
To find out if you or your child is becoming shortsighted, schedule a comprehensive eye exam with an eye doctor at planoeyecheck.com
All About Vision. 2022. What does ‘nearsighted’ mean?. [online] Available at: <https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/myopia-faq/what-does-nearsighted-mean.htm> [Accessed 1 March 2022].
All About Vision. 2022. What’s the difference between nearsightedness and farsightedness?. [online] Available at: <https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/myopia-faq/nearsightedness-and-farsightedness.htm> [Accessed 1 March 2022].
Mayo Clinic. 2022. Nearsightedness – Symptoms and causes. [online] Available at: <https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/nearsightedness/symptoms-causes/syc-20375556> [Accessed 1 March 2022].
Explore our specifically designed products and services backed by eye health professionals to help keep your children safe online and their eyes healthy.