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I am near-sighted. For a long time (especially before Optometry school), I struggled with what this meant and how to remember the difference between being near-sighted and far-sighted – CONFUSING! Well, I’m going to try to explain it here as best as I can.

First of all, when I see the word near-sighted, I think “sight at near WITHOUT glasses.” When we’re near-sighted, without glasses, at a certain distance up close, we can clearly see what we’re looking at. However, when we attempt to look at further distances, things can start to get blurry.

Secondly, to understand near-sightedness or myopia fully, we have to understand how light focuses in the eye. When we are emmetropic (no glasses needed), that means light enters the eye and focuses RIGHT ON the back of the eye (retina). When we are near-sighted (myopic), light focuses IN FRONT of the retina and we see a blurry image in the distance; glasses help focus that light right onto the retina in order for us to see a clear image. For completeness sake, far-sightedness occurs when light focuses BEHIND the retina.

Myopia Drawing

So, if you find yourself squinting in the distance, be sure to contact your eye care professional for an eye exam as there is a very simple and stylish fix for that (glasses)!

Dr. Manvit Singh