Understanding Myopia: Causes, Symptoms, and Management

Myopia or nearsightedness is the most prevalent eye problem in America and worldwide. In America, current statistics show that the condition affects 40 percent of the population, which is 25 percent more than forty years ago. Moreover, one in four parents has a child with this condition, and experts predict that these numbers will continue to increase in the coming years.

The condition usually develops when a child is between six and 14 years old. Some experts point to excessive near-vision activities as the culprit for placing children at higher risk for the condition. This conclusion is supported by the fact that the number of affected people has increased in tandem with the rise of technology. 


What Is Myopia?


Myopia is a vision issue that affects a person’s ability to look at things that are far away. Some people may have a severe form of this condition, which can limit their ability to function in the world. Others may have only a mild form and require correction only in certain situations. 


What Are the Causes?


The leading cause of myopia is still unknown, but scientists have a good understanding of how the condition develops. People with myopia usually have elongated eyeballs and bulging corneas. This eye feature is the main reason they struggle with distance vision. 

When light enters the eye, it is refracted by the cornea and then focused by the lens. In people with myopia, the refraction is affected by the bulging cornea. The point of focus of the light is also affected by the elongated eyeball. 

Some things put you at risk of developing the condition, such as the following:

  • Genetics

Genetics is the foremost risk factor for the condition. If one or both parents have the condition, it is likely that the children will also have it. The risk is much higher if both parents have the condition. 

  • Prolonged Close-up Work

If your child spends most of their time indoors performing near-vision tasks, they are at a higher risk. This is more so if they use digital devices with LED screens. Experts advise children to spend considerable time outside to nurture their eye health. 




While many people have a mild form of the condition, others are not as fortunate. An eye doctor cannot tell what form you have when the condition first develops. High myopia is quite dangerous to vision as it can lead to more severe eye issues in the future. 

Because of this, eye doctors will often use management strategies to slow down the condition's progression. Here are some management strategies:

  • Ortho-k

These are specialty contact lenses that reshape the cornea gently while you sleep. In children, they can help slow or limit the elongation of the eyeball.

  • Atropine Eye Drops

These eye drops also help slow the elongation of the eyeball and the bulging of the cornea. It is essential to have a qualified eye doctor to help your child manage the condition as safely as possible.

For more on the management of myopia, visit Trinity Eye Care at our office in Plano, Texas. Call (972) 895-9260 to book an appointment today.