What is Myopia?

Myopia or short-sightedness is a common eye condition resulting from eyeball elongation which causes the image to focus at a point in front of the retina instead of on the surface of the retina. Myopia patients are able to see close objects but distant objects appear to be blurry. Other symptoms include squinting and eye tiredness. The cause of myopia is related to an excessive amount of time spent indoors, insufficient exposure to natural light and prolonged near work in childhood.

Prevalence of myopia has been increasing rapidly in recent years and is becoming an epidemic. The average age of myopia onset is now far younger than before . Currently, the average age of onset is 8 years old, which is younger than the age of onset reported several years ago. The condition generally progresses continuously into adulthood with the fastest progression usually occurring during school years. Unfortunately, wearing glasses or traditional contact lenses can not slow down myopia progression. Although modern technology, such as laser eye surgery can correct vision, eyeball elongation is non-reversable and cannot be cured by laser eye surgery or any other means.

High myopia refers to myopia greater than -5.00D. Children with high myopia parents have greater risk of developing high myopia. Additionally, high myopia patients have increased risk of developing many eye diseases such as retinal detachment, cataracts and glaucoma.

Although myopia is not completely preventable, there are steps you can take to minimize myopia occurring. Scientists suggest that a minimum 2 hours of outdoor activities can help to prevent the onset of myopia.

Preventing myopia progression at early age is becoming paramount. There are many methods of preventing and slowing down its progression. Here at Myopia Control Centre, we adopt Orthokeratology, otherwise referred as Ortho-K, which has been proven to be the most effective treatment, and topical medications such as atropine eye drops.

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