Can Myopia get better?

Updated: May 3

What can I do to make my Myopia better? That’s one of the first questions which people tend to ask following a diagnosis of Myopia, otherwise known as short sightedness. The simple answer is that in most cases there is little you can do to improve your eyesight from the level it has reached.

That could make for a very short article. However, just because there is little you can do to reverse your existing level of Myopia, that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything to affect how it develops in the future.

First of all it is essential that your glasses or contact lenses have the correct prescription. Under-strength lenses or not wearing corrective lenses at all can result in a speeding up of the growth of the eyeball, leading to increasing Myopia. On the other hand wearing lenses that match your current level of Myopia can help to reduce blur and maintain good vision.

Therapeutic intervention has the potential to slow Myopia progression down. Potential interventions range from the wearing of myopia control lenses to reducing close work such as on computers and increasing the amount of time spent outdoors.

Myopia control lenses not only include a distance vision adjustment to fully correct vision, they also act to reduce the way in which light falls on the periphery of the retina or they reduce the effort needed to carry out close work. This can help to reduce the trigger mechanism which results in the eye growing in a way that leads to increased levels of Myopia.

Any interventions which lead to a slowing down of the rate of development can be particularly beneficial when it comes to children. With some exceptions, Myopia tends to manifest in early childhood and will continue to progress as the child grows. The size of the prescription required may eventually stop increasing, with one study [1] reporting the mean age for Myopia stabilization occurring at the age of fifteen. Evidence does suggest, however, that myopia can progress well into adulthood.

So for children in particular, therapies which slow down the progression of Myopia could lead to a lower prescription requirement for the rest of the individual’s life. More importantly, high levels of Myopia have been shown to potentially lead to an increased incidence of other eye conditions such as cataracts, glaucoma or detached retinas in later life. That’s another good reason to intervene as soon as childhood Myopia has been identified. You may not be able to make your child’s Myopia go away but you can take action which will reduce its impact throughout their life.

If you're a parent whose child has been diagnosed with myopia, or if they are struggling with their distance vision, we hope you found MyopiaFocus helpful. Please join our community or sign our petition to get the government and NHS to recognise myopia as an ocular disease/serious ocular condition and fund myopia management for children.

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