How to Treat Nearsightedness

happy woman with eye surgeon

Also known as myopia, nearsightedness is a very common problem that affects countless people across the United States. It occurs when the light that comes into the eye is not focused properly onto the retina, making it difficult or impossible to see objects that are far away from you. However, you will find that you can see things that are close to you clearly. For example, you have no problems reading a book or the screen of your smartphone.

Symptoms of nearsightedness

As well as experiencing blurred vision when trying to see distant objects, other symptoms that you may suffer from include:

- Headaches caused by eyestrain

- Needing to squint or partially close your eyelids in order to see clearly

- Difficulty driving, particularly at night

Since myopia does not only affect adults, it is equally as important to watch out for signs of the condition in your child, particularly if they are young and may not realize that their eyesight is actually impaired. This is a common problem that can cause many children to seem behind in their academic development but in actual fact is only caused by their inability to see clearly. Identifying, diagnosing and treating the near-sightedness quickly is essential if your child is to reach their full potential.

Signs that a child may be suffering from near-sightedness can include:

- Choosing to sit very close to the television

- Needing to sit at the front of the class to see work on the board clearly

- Blinking excessively

- Rubbing his/her eyes frequently

- Complaining of headaches

Causes of nearsightedness

It is not known exactly what causes the refractive error that leads patients to develop myopia. However, there are some factors which are believed to contribute towards the development of the condition. These include:

- Spending a lot of time reading and doing close-up work such as using a computer screen, sewing or making jewellery.

- Not getting enough exposure to natural light.

- A genetic pre-disposition. If either or both of your parents are nearsighted, you are more likely to experience the same problem.

Treating nearsightedness

The good news is that it is entirely possible to treat nearsightedness and there are several options available to you. Which is right for you will depend on your individual circumstances, and we recommend that you speak to your eye doctor to obtain a professional recommendation.

The different ways to treat near-sightedness include:

Glasses

Glasses are the most common solution for myopia across the world. They are fitted with prescription lenses which are designed to alter the way that light enters your eye, correcting the refractive error and enabling your optic nerve to interpret it clearly. The thickness and weight of the lenses you will need will depend on how short-sighted you are.

While glasses are highly effective, many patients become frustrated with wearing and relying on them. Some activities such as swimming or sports that require the use of protective eyewear are impossible while wearing glasses. Remembering to take your glasses with you when you leave the house, and the fragility of them are two other commonly-cited complaints.

Contact Lenses

Contact lenses are a popular alternative to glasses, but they do not agree with everyone. Some people dislike the thought of putting lenses into their eyes and others cannot get used to wearing them no matter how hard they try. If you suffer from seasonal allergies and your eyes are already irritated, putting the lenses in may be tricky if not impossible. Contacts are also normally more expensive than glasses.

Laser eye surgery

The most sought-after elective surgery in the world, laser eye surgery works on correcting nearsightedness and other refractive eye errors by reshaping the cornea itself. The procedure is painless and can be performed in less than half an hour, including preparation and your initial recovery. Afterwards, patients experience such significant improvement in their eyesight that their reliance on eyeglasses is drastically reduced or even eliminated entirely.

While some patients do have concerns about the use of laser technology to correct their vision, the procedure is considered very safe and the risk of complications is low.


If you are concerned that you may be suffering from nearsightedness and would like to arrange an appointment to discuss your vision, our dedicated team would be delighted to assist you. Please contact us to schedule an appointment.