You have probably heard the term “myopia” during an eye exam when the doctor was explaining your need for glasses or contact lenses. Although “myopia” or “myopic prescriptions” are a common thing for your optometrist, sometimes the technical terminology is overwhelming and hard to understand. So, what is myopia, and how does it affect your vision and day-to-day life?
What is Myopia, and how does it affect your eyes?
Myopia is simply the technical term for nearsightedness, a condition where the eyes have grown in an elongated shape instead of perfectly round. This irregular formation prevents light from focusing at the back of the eye, called the retina. Because the retina sends light through the optic nerve to the brain to form images. When the light doesn’t reach the retina properly, as with myopia, it causes distant objects to appear blurry.
In an eye with myopia, the light focuses in front of the retina instead of at the back of the eye.
Myopia is considered a progressive disease and can lead to additional vision problems later in life if it goes untreated. Myopia is often found in young children and treated with glasses or contact lenses. Children who are diagnosed with nearsightedness often have progressively worsening prescriptions over the years until they reach adulthood. Myopia progression has been linked to vision problems later in life like retinal detachment, macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, and retinal tearing.
Treatment of myopia can reduce the risk of severe eye problems later in life.
The progressing prescription is a result of the eye changing as the child grows and often is not slowed or stopped by glasses or contacts. Instead, these solutions treat the symptoms of myopia -- blurry vision, headaches, eyestrain -- without addressing the actual disease. One of the most effective ways of treating this progressive disease is with Orthokeratology or Ortho-K lenses. These are hard, contact lenses that are worn by the patient overnight to reshape the surface of the eye gently. This process has been proven to slow the progression of myopia in young children.
The Ortho-K lenses gently corrects the shape of the eye without causing discomfort for the user.
Myopia is one of the most commonly diagnosed prescriptions. Although there is no cure out there for nearsightedness, there are a lot of options for treating the symptoms and even slowing the progression of the disease. If you believe that you have myopia, contact us today! Our team can help give you clear vision and peace of mind with ease.