Myopia is the medical term for near- or short-sightedness. Those with myopia see nearby objects perfectly clearly, but distant objects appear blurred. The shortsighted eye is not generally “worse” than the normal eye, for it can be superior in near vision.
What is myopia?
In most cases of myopia, the eyeball is too long. Therefore, the images are not focused on the retina, but in front of it. On the retina, a blurred image is formed. Accordingly, a short sighted person will need diverging lenses that will help to focus the image on the retina and not in front of it.
Am I ``spoiling`` my eyes wearing spectacles or contact lenses?
No! At the most, you will spoil yourself. Whoever has had good vision previously, will rarely be content with poorer vision. When visual acuity changes, it should be taken into consideration that the eye, as any other organ, grows. Sometimes, its period of growth has not finished whilst the rest of the body has already reached its final size. Progressive myopia can be attributed to the natural growth of the eye ball, with each millimeter of growth corresponding to an increase of about 3 diopters after all.
Can myopia increase through overstraining my eyes?
It has been proven that continuous nearwork (reading, writing, work on the computer) increases the risk of developing myopia and of its deterioration. Therefore, it is advised to have a regular glance at the distance during such activities to relax the eye. Also, short sighted people may try to read without their spectacles when doing near work in order to relax their accomodating eye muscles.
Is it possible to delay shortsightedness wearing contact lenses?
Some optometrists still claim that hard contactlenses slow the progression of myopia. Until now, there has been no scientific proof of this.
I suffer from myopia. Should I have my eyes checked more frequently?
Yes! You should have an eye check done on a regular basis. Due to the elongated eye ball in myopic patients, the retina sometimes becomes thinner in certain areas and may tear. This may lead to retinal detachment, a serious condition which could cause vision loss. Diagnosed early enough, the holes in the retina can be sealed with laser treatment. In case the retina is already detached, surgery is necessary. Prof. Findl will be able to inform you about the different surgical options.
Are there any eye diseases which cause myopia?
Elderly people may develop a special form of cataract , called nuclear cataract, which progresses very slowly. It is characterised by an increase of lens refractive power rather than by clouding of the lens. This results in patients suddenly not needing their reading glasses anymore.
What are the surgery options to correct myopia?
There are many surgical options:
- Corneal Surgery (laser treatment such as PRK, LASIK and LASEK)
- Artifical lens implants in addition to the natural lens
- Refrective lens exchange (cataract surgery with clear lens)