Myopia or short-sightedness is a condition of the eye where the light that comes in does not directly focus on the retina but in front of it, causing the image that one sees when looking at a distant object to be out of focus, but in focus when looking at a close object. Myopia is corrected with negatively powered lenses. It may also be corrected by refractive surgery, though there are cases of associated side effects.


1. What is myopia?

Myopia is a vision condition in which near objects are generally seen clearly, but distant objects are blurred and do not come into proper focus.

2. Why does Myopia occur? When your eyeball is too long or the cornea has too much curvature, light entering the eye is not focused properly. Hereditary factors often control the growth and development of the eye. However, some evidence supports the theory that myopia may also be caused by the stress of too much close vision work.

3. How common is myopia? Myopia is a very common vision condition that affects nearly 30 percent of the American population. It normally first occurs in school age children. Since the eye continues to grow during childhood, nearsightedness generally develops before the individual reaches age 20.

4. How is myopia diagnosed? Myopic children are usually easy to identify because they often squint or have trouble seeing the chalkboard , the movie screen, the television set or other distant objects. A comprehensive optometric examination will include testing for myopia.

5. How is myopia treated? Eyeglasses or contact lenses can be prescribed to optically correct myopia and enable you to see more clearly. They alter the way the light images are focused in your eyes, but they do not cure myopia. You may only need them for certain activities, like watching television, going to a movie or driving a car.

 6. How will myopia affect my lifestyle? Most individuals adapt well to wearing glasses or contact lenses. For those individuals who feel glasses affect their image or interfere with their activities, contact lenses may provide options to better meet their lifestyle and vision needs. In some cases, more severely nearsighted individuals may find the condition limits their choice of occupations.