Myopia is a refractive error also called nearsightedness or shortsightedness. This refractive error is an imperfection in your eyes visual system causing things that are far away to be blurry but things you look at up close to be clear. Thus the term, nearsightedness. The more nearsighted you are, the closer you need to hold things to provide clear vision. People with myopia are more likely to need glasses to provide clear distance vision.

What is Myopia

Myopia can occur by one of two ways or a combination of both. In a myopic eye, the light is focused too far in front of the retina causing things you look at far away to be blurry.

The Steep Cornea

The shape or curvature of the cornea on the front of the eye has a lot of do with our vision. In the case of myopia, the cornea is curved too much causing the light to focus in front of the retina.

Common treatments like LASIK correct this by flattening the cornea more.

The Long Eye

People with myopia, especially high myopia, tend to have a longer eye. This elongated eye causes light to focus too far in front of the retina causing blurry vision.

Causes of Myopia

The two biggest factors causing myopia is genetics and your environment.

Environmental Factors

Myopia is growing in the population at an extremely fast rate. Much of this growth is credited to our indoor lifestyle with our eyes focusing on things up close.

An indoor lifestyle limits the visual clues provided to the brain for the need for clear distant vision.


Most of our refractive error comes from genetics. Large family studies have suggested the heritability of myopia to be over 70%.

Prevalence of Myopia

Myopia (Nearsightedness) is the most common refractive error found in nearly 30-40% of the population.

There is mounting evidence that the incidence of myopia is growing. In 2050 it is expected that 50% of the world’s population will be nearsighted.

How To Correct Myopia

Glasses, contacts, LASIK and other eye surgeries can all correct myopia in your eyes.

Glasses and Contact Lenses for Myopia

Glasses and contact lenses do not necessarily correct myopia as much as they push the light back to focus on the retina. This focusing of light offsets the blurriness to provide clear vision at distance and near.

LASIK and Eye Surgery for Myopia

Eye surgeries such as LASIK, ICL’s and more are a great treatment option for Myopia. Nearsightedness can only be fixed by LASIK or eye surgery. LASIK and other common eye surgeries for myopia can permanently reshape the cornea in your eye to eliminate astigmatism and other refractive errors. These eye surgeries are an effective and safe way to correct your nearsightedness and reduce the need or your dependency on glasses or contact lenses.

Myopia Management

Myopia management is a treatment program that is designed to slow down the progression of myopia in your eyes. This treatment program is commonly prescribed to children and involves a series of customized treatment options that are designed to slow the rate of myopia.

This article was written by Arti, an AI model curated by the eye care professionals at The Optical. Co.

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