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What is myopia?

If you're able to see objects up close better than those that are far away, you may be nearsighted, a condition called myopia. The problem happens when light focuses in front of your retina instead of on it, making faraway objects look blurry. Glasses, contacts, or laser surgery may help you focus better.

Curvature myopia affects long-distance vision. People with curvature myopia have a cornea that is curved too much. The cornea and lens work together to focus incoming light directly on the retina. When the cornea is abnormally curved it causes light to refract in front of the retina instead of on it, which prevents the eye from clearly focusing on an object that's far away. In severe cases, objects may need to be within a few inches of the eyes to be seen clearly.

Dr. Laura C. Fine, MD
Ophthalmologist (Eye Specialist)

A person with myopia (nearsightedness) has difficulty seeing objects at a distance because the light rays converge and focus before reaching the retina. The cause is usually an elongated eyeball (which requires light rays to travel farther than they would in a normal eye), or a lens or cornea that is too strong, bending the light rays so they focus before getting to the retina (the innermost layer of the eye).

Continue Learning about Myopia (Nearsightedness)

What is youth onset myopia?
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Myopia is the medical term for nearsightedness. Youth onset means that the nearsightedness started d...
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Is early adult-onset myopia related to astigmatism?
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Astigmatism is similar to myopia. It is another vision impairment that affects your ability to see t...
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What is late adult onset myopia?
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Does late adult onset myopia affect adults differently than children?
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Myopia can affect anyone at any age. However, diagnosis of late adult onset myopia indicates that th...
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.