With the onset of formal medicine distinct from other disciplines, humans have strived to understand and treat any illnesses that came to their attention. Regarding the eyes, the earliest documented treatment dates back to 1550 B.C. in Egypt. Since then, many advancements have been made in understanding the eye and its various illnesses.
In 1554, Maurolycus became the first person to differentiate the refraction of light in nearsighted eyes. He also proposed correcting the two refractive errors, farsighted and nearsightedness, using convex and concave lenses. Unfortunately, myopia numbers continue to grow rapidly, and about half of the world will have it by 2050.
Myopia is a refractive error that affects the eyes' ability to see things far from them. Items close to your eyes are usually clear but get blurry as it moves farther away. It usually develops under ten years and worsens as you age until you turn 21.
The condition can be corrected using prescriptive eyewear like contact lenses and eyeglasses. You can also get a more permanent solution like laser surgery, but that is only available to people whose vision has stabilized.
Myopia occurs due to structural changes that affect how the eye functions. While the changes are well understood, the cause is unknown. The structure change involves the eyeball's elongation, which leads to a bulging cornea. These two combined affect how light refracts into the eye and where it focuses.
The elongated eyeball and bulging cornea cause light to focus on a spot in front of the retina. This is what causes the blurry vision common in all myopes. The structural changes continue until a child's vision stabilizes at 21 years old. The continuous elongation makes the condition worse in a process called myopia progression.
Myopia symptoms are very standard and easy to recognize if you are keen. Here are the most common ones:
Objects get blurry the farther they move from your eyes, while close-up things look clear
Eyestrain, especially at the end of the day
Tired eyes when you are playing sports, driving, or looking at something a few feet away for some time
In children developing the condition, you may notice the following behavioral habits:
Poor school grades
Holding objects close to their face to see better
Short attention span
Sitting closer to the TV and moving even closer over time
Myopia is a hereditary condition that commonly affects children whose parents have it.
Engaging in close-up activity for a long time is associated with the risk of developing myopia. The risk is incredibly high if the activity involves using digital screens for extended periods.
Most treatments for myopia aim to focus light properly on the retina, the root of the problem that leads to the condition. Some of the most popular treatments over the years have been lenses and surgery, which are highly effective.
The most popular lenses are eyeglasses and contact lenses, with the latter gaining overwhelming popularity in recent times.
Eye surgeries greatly reduce or even eliminate the need for wearing lenses. Some of the most effective surgeries include LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis), LASEK (laser-assisted subepithelial keratectomy), PRK (photorefractive keratectomy), and SMILE (small incision lenticule extraction).
For more on myopia, visit Berris Optical at our Rocky River, Ohio office. Call (440) 571-7100 to book an appointment today.