Myopia: Causes and Symptoms

    Myopia and its symptoms

    Myopia is a condition of the eye, where the light that comes in does not directly focus on the retina but in front of it, causing the image that one sees when looking at a distant object to be out of focus, but in focus when looking at a close object.

    Myopia is the most frequent eye condition in our population: nearsighted people cannot see well distant objects.

    Myopia is the most frequent eye condition in our population: nearsighted people cannot see well distant objects. Visual acuity (visus) is measured in tenths: if, while seated at a fixed distance from the Eye Chart (the board used for the examination), you can read 10 lines, then you have 10 tenths; if you can read 6 lines, you have 6 tenths, and so on.

    The diopter is the power of the lens that let us achieve the best possible vision in case of eye conditions: it does not represent how much a patient sees, but rather the lens’s power needed to obtain the best vision possible.

    There are three types of myopia:  light degree myopia (up to 4 diopters), medium degree myopia (up to 8 diopters), and high degree myopia (more than 8 diopters). In any case, it takes only few diopters (2-3) to feel lost without glasses or contact lenses: correcting myopia is therefore necessary for the majority of nearsighted patients.

    Freedom from glasses and contact lenses

    Today correcting myopia is possible with glasses, contact lenses or via laser surgery. You can forget glasses and contact lenses for good thanks to:

    • Excimer Lasers
    • Femtoseconds Laser
    • Intraocular lenses that substitute the original lens
    • Intraocular contact lenses or Phakic lenses

    The latest news consists in a Hight Tech intraocular lens that can be customised using laser. This myopia surgery has been performed for the first time ever in Milan by Dr. Badalà in 2010.

    Myopia Causes

    Myopia is usually caused by an excessive lenght of the orb.

    Another cause could be the altered curvature of the cornea or the lens. Myopia can appear during the initial and intermediate phases of cataract, or after significant metabolic changes (e.g. diabetes): this happens because of alterations of the refraction index of dioptric tools (e.g. the lens).

    An alteration in the cornea shape, noticeable in the keratoconus, involves the presence of myopia and astigmatism that increase over time.

    How (not to) recover in a natural way

    For a long time rumors had it that it is possible to recover from myopia in a natural way, without having to rely on surgery or glasses. One of these techniques is called orthokeratology: it simply consists in wearing special contact lenses over night and removing them in the morning.

    What happens is that these lenses distort the cornea, flattening it over night, so that patients see better during the day. They work like a bustier, worn at night, that makes people appear slimmer in the morning. This process can severely damage the cornea.