Nearsightedness, or myopia, is the most common type of refractive error. About 30% of all people are nearsighted.

Being nearsighted means you are able to see near objects clearly, but distant objects are blurred.

There are a few different things that can cause someone to be nearsighted. The lens or cornea may be too curved or, more commonly, the eye itself may be too long-so light comes to a focal point before it reaches the back of the eye, which makes it difficult for the eye to focus a clear picture of a distant object on the retina.

Most nearsighted people wear glasses or contact lenses to see distant objects clearly. Still, while glasses and contact lenses are effective, they aren’t always ideal. They can be lost or broken and they can be a nuisance during physical activities like sports or activities that require frequent switching between near and distant vision. Contact lenses require additional cleaning and care and glasses can alter your appearance.

Ways to improve nearsightedness today

Advanced techniques now make it easier than ever to improve nearsightedness permanently-often reducing or completely eliminating the need for glasses or contacts.

LASIK surgery is a safe, effective option for many nearsighted people. LASIK can help you see both near and distant objects clearly-without glasses or contacts.

If you are over 40, presbyopia surgery may be an excellent option for improving nearsightedness along with presbyopia (a common refractive error that develops over time and causes a loss of near vision). You can reduce your need for glasses or contacts, including reading glasses.

Cataract surgery may be the best option for nearsighted people over 60 who have begun to develop cataracts. Modern cataract surgeries can simultaneously correct other refractive errors, including presbyopia and nearsightedness. Some surgical options will even allow you to see clearly at all distances without glasses or contact lenses.

If you are nearsighted, talk with Dr. Emara about which procedure is right for you.