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Eye Care Center in Raleigh NCMyopia or the condition of nearsightedness is amongst the most common problem with eyes, and this condition is becoming increasingly more common in recent years. The N.E.I. reports that this condition has increased from one fourth of the population in 1972 to over 40% in recent years. There is no specific data on why the increase has happened over the last 45 years, but it is suspected that the use of computers is at the root of the increase. It is believed the increase is caused by viewing a computer screen all day coupled together with genetic factors.

The Signs And Symptoms Of Myopia

If you or someone you know is nearsighted, then you will be able to view a computer screen or read a book easily, but when you try to look at a road sign while driving or anything at a distance, it will be more difficult. Because this condition causes a person to have a difficult time seeing at a distance, they will more often squint, and this can lead to chronic headaches. Anyone who feels fatigued while engaged in sports or when driving might be suffering from this condition.

If you have glasses or contacts and you experience any of those symptoms, then you will need to schedule an appointment with your eye doctor. Your prescription is likely incorrect, and an examination can determine what would be a better prescription for you.

What Is The Cause Of Myopia?

This condition exists when the length of the eyeball is too long when compared to the eye’s ability to focus with the cornea and the eye lens. This condition then causes light rays to focus on a specific point in front of the retina instead of on its surface. In other cases, the lens is too curved when compared to the length of the eyeball. As you would expect, myopia is sometimes caused by a combination of these problems.

For most people, this condition will start while they are still a child. If one or more parents have this condition, then it puts the child at a greater risk oh having it too. Fortunately, most children who have myopia will find that it stabilizes as they become an adult, but there are cases when it continues to progress.

point of focus

Treatment For Myopia

This condition is commonly treated using contact lenses or glasses and in more recent years can be treated with refractive surgery. How often you will need to wear your glasses will depend on the severity of your condition. Some people may find that they have to wear them all the time while others will only need them when they need to be able to see clearly at a distance. For those who don’t need to wear them all the time, they made need to do so when watching a movie or driving or when in class and needing to see the chalkboard clearly.

High index lenses are lighter and thinner and often a good choice for those with nearsightedness. Anyone wearing these types of glasses might also consider photochromic lenses which help protect against blue light from your computer and UV light from the sun. For those that are nearsighted, their vision test will indicate the first number with a minus sign and the higher the number, the more nearsighted a person is.

Refractive surgery has become more and more commonplace recently and is one choice of treatment for nearsightedness. An excimer laser is used for the most common procedures for this condition. The PRK laser is a process that removes a layer of tissue from the eye which flattens the cornea and in turn, allows light rays to more accurately focus on the retina.

Of the refractive procedures, LASIK is one of the most common and most well known. During the surgery, a thin flap is made on the surface of the cornea, and then a laser removes a bit of corneal tissue and once that’s completed the flap is then positioned back to its original place. There is also a non-surgical method that is called Orthokeratology. This uses a rigid type of contact lens that is worn while sleeping and works by reshaping your cornea while you are fast asleep. The next day your cornea can temporarily retain its new shape. This allows you to see better during the day without having to use your contact lenses or glasses.

This procedure and another closely related to it known as CRT are effective temporary treatments for correcting moderate and mild myopia. They are a good choice when someone wants an alternative to surgery, so they don’t need glasses during the day. For those that are too young for LASIK or for other reasons are not good candidates, then this is also a good alternative.

Another less known surgical option is implantable lenses and is also a reasonable option for correcting nearsightedness. For those who have significant amounts of myopia and have thinner than normal corneas which puts them at risk for LASIK surgery, the implants might be a more suitable choice. Phakic IOLs are very much like contact lenses except for the fact that they are surgically put into place and designed to be a permanent solution. This is not to be mistaken for IOLs for cardiac surgery because this type of IOL does not replace your eyes natural lenses. They are left intact.

How To Control Myopia

Because this condition is on the increase, many more people are interested in ways that they can control its progression while in childhood. Various techniques have been tried with mixed results. These include progressive lenses, bifocals, and even gas permeable contact lenses. Some researchers in New Zealand have had exciting results using dual focus soft contact lenses to help children control their nearsightedness. These lenses have more power in the center and less power at the periphery of the lens. This is believed to help prevent the eye from getting worse.

Recent research has found that 70% of the children who use these experimental lenses decrease the progression of their myopia by 30%. These types of lenses are not yet available in the United States, but research is continuing to be done to demonstrate their effectiveness. New research is being done to expand the total population of children who are using these types of lenses.