Nearsightedness, or myopia, as it is medically termed, is a vision condition in which close objects are seen clearly, but objects farther away appear blurred. Nearsightedness occurs if the eyeball is too long or the cornea, the clear front cover of the eye, has too much curvature. As a result, the light entering the eye isn't focused correctly and distant objects look blurred.
Generally, nearsightedness first occurs in school-age children because the eye continues to grow during childhood. In many cases, myopia will stabilize when the growth process has been completed, and glasses can offer normal vision. Higher levels of myopia, however, tend to be hereditary, meaning that if there is a moderately or highly nearsighted parent, the odds are higher for one of the children to be myopic. However, nearsightedness may also develop in adults due to visual stress or health conditions such as diabetes.
A common sign of nearsightedness is difficulty with the clarity of distant objects like a movie or TV screen or the chalkboard in school. A comprehensive optometric examination will include testing for nearsightedness. An optometrist can prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses that a correct nearsightedness by bending the visual images that enter the eyes, focusing the images correctly at the back of the eye. Depending on the amount of nearsightedness, you may only need to wear glasses or contact lenses for certain activities, like watching a movie or driving a car. Or, if you are very nearsighted, they may need to be worn all the time.
Another option for treating nearsightedness is Orthokeratology, also known as corneal refractive therapy. It is a non-surgical procedure that involves wearing a series of specially designed rigid contact lenses to gradually reshape the curvature of your cornea. The lenses place pressure on the cornea to flatten it. This changes how light entering the eye is focused.
Laser procedures are also a possible treatment for nearsightedness in adults. They involve reshaping the cornea by removing a small amount of eye tissue. This is accomplished by using a highly focused laser beam on the surface of the eye.