Myopia, commonly known as nearsightedness, is a disease that affects about 3 million Americans every year. A staggering number, yes, and even more people have myopia and go undiagnosed every year. Alarmingly so, this disease is actually the number one cause of impaired vision to people under 40, and in recent years, cases have been growing at an exponential rate. In fact, experts predict that about forty percent of Americans live with Myopia.
Causes and Symptoms
Nearsightedness is what happens when your eyeball is too long relative to where light is focused on the cornea. If you can think back to when you were a kid and you used to burn things with a magnifying glass, you probably can imagine how myopia works inside your eye.
In order to burn something, the magnifying glass needed to be the perfect distance away from a given object so that the light would concentrate on a single point. In this analogy, myopia would be the situation in which the magnifying glass was too far away from the object, and the light concentration point would simply not have the distance to reach the object you’re trying to burn.
So now we know what myopia is, but why are our eyes focusing incorrectly? Many experts say its likely caused from the exact screen you’re looking at to read this article. Apparently, since many people today are spending the majority of their time looking at screens rather than far away objects, our eyes adjust to focusing on objects that are close to us rather than far, hence making out farsight suffer. However, these are only hypotheses, and we don’t have exact data that proves this.
Some causes we are sure of, however, are genetics. It’s likely that you were born with a cornea or lens that was too curved, or the shape of your eye was too oval. In this case, it probably doesn’t matter how often we look at our computer or phone screen.
Unfortunately, for people that have been diagnosed with myopia, the only treatment available is an incredibly long, expensive, and painful surgery.
We’re kidding. The vast majority of people affected by this extremely common condition opt for using glasses or contact lenses rather than going through with the surgery. Though, there are actually some types of surgery available to treat nearsightedness, such as LASIC or intraocular lens procedures.
Fortunately for all the myopic people among us today, glasses are becoming way more popular in both fashion and professional circles. In fact, your favorite blogger or web designer probably sports a sweet pair or Everads.