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What Causes Myopia to Worsen?

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A side view of a child with headphones using a laptop very close to her face

Myopia is a vision condition that can make distant objects appear blurry while close-up objects remain clear. Typically, it stabilizes during early adulthood—but it can continually get worse over time as well, even during adulthood.

Myopia tends to get worse for kids as they age, but it can also get worse for children and adults when they experience a significant amount of frequent visual stress from focusing on nearby objects, if they spend most—or all—of their time indoors, and because of some medical conditions, like diabetes.

If you notice your vision is changing, you should visit your optometrist for a comprehensive eye exam. Through adult and children’s eye exams, we can monitor myopia progression and help protect your lifetime eye health. 

What Is Myopia?

Myopia, more commonly known as nearsightedness, is a refractive error. This means that it causes light to refract incorrectly in your eye. It can cause distant objects to appear blurry while nearby objects appear clear. 

The causes of myopia include:

  • Your eye growing too long from front to back
  • Your cornea or lens being too curved for the length of your eyeball.

No matter which of the causes above affect you, the result is often the same—light rays focus at the wrong point in your eye and cause objects to appear blurrier the further away they get. 

Myopia typically starts to develop in early childhood and progresses further as you grow before stabilizing around the age of 20. For some people, myopia can continue to get worse over time even beyond early adulthood.

What Makes Myopia Get Worse?

In addition to age, some of the factors that can affect myopia development and progression include:

  • Stressing your eyes with too much nearby visual work
  • A lack of exposure to natural light
  • Certain underlying health conditions, like diabetes
  • Cataracts and other eye conditions

It’s important to schedule regular eye exams to monitor your eye health and catch any potential issues early. If you start to notice a change in your vision—like things looking blurrier than you’re used to—it’s essential that you get your eyes checked soon.

Remember, your eyes are an incredibly complex organ, and many eye conditions are much more treatable in their earlier stages. Early detection through routine eye exams can provide an opportunity to catch conditions like myopia before they get worse. 

Is It Possible to Reverse Myopia?

Many people who live with myopia find themselves wondering if the condition is reversible or permanent. Unfortunately, myopia is a permanent condition. Since it’s caused by a misshapen eye or cornea, it doesn’t go away on its own. But there is some good news! 

Myopia is a highly treatable condition, and with the help of an experienced optometrist, its effects on your life can be minimized. Glasses and contact lenses are common options for seeing clearly with myopia, and myopia control treatments can help some people, particularly children, reduce the lifetime effects of myopia. 

For adults, an optometrist may recommend laser eye surgery as an option. Procedures like LASIK and PRK use laser technology to reshape your cornea. This can help correct your refractive error and reduce or remove the need for eyeglasses or contacts.

However, not everybody is a suitable candidate for these surgeries. That’s why it’s important to schedule a laser eye surgery consultation with your optometrist. We can thoroughly examine your eyes to determine whether or not laser eye surgery could benefit you.

What to Do if Your Myopia Gets Worse

If you’ve recently noticed that your vision is getting worse, you should schedule an appointment with your optometrist. We can assess your vision and adjust your prescription if necessary.

We can also give you advice on properly managing your myopia. Depending on your health and needs, we may recommend certain lifestyle changes, like regularly taking breaks from work that requires intense focus.

A side view of a child with headphones using a laptop very close to her face

Where to Get Help for Nearsightedness

Myopia is a common condition, and you don’t have to deal with it alone. If you have any vision problems, come visit us at Los Angeles EyeCare Optometry Group. We’re committed to taking care of your vision, and our team is here to help. Book an appointment with us today!

Written by Total Vision

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