• If you’re having trouble focusing your eyes on far-away objects such as oncoming traffic or the television, or if you find yourself squinting to read street signs and people in the distance appear blurry, you may have what optometrists describe as myopia, better known as short-sightedness.

  • Short-sightedness is a refractive error, meaning the light entering the eye doesn’t focus properly. This may mean it’s easy to see nearby objects such as books and computers but harder to see those further away, resulting in difficulties driving, learning at school or university, or even headaches and eyestrain.[1] Short-sightedness is the leading cause of vision impairment worldwide, and it’s projected to affect nearly 50% of the world's population by 2050.[2],[3]

  • So why is short-sightedness becoming so common, what’s causing it, and can it be treated? The good news is that in most cases, with the expertise of an experienced optometrist, short-sightedness is highly treatable, giving you the freedom to do the things you enjoy.

What Is Myopia Or Short-Sightedness?

  • To make sense of what can cause short-sightedness, we must first understand a little about the anatomy of the eyes:

  • •  The cornea is the clear and protective outer layer of the eye and is the first entry point for light

  • •  The lens is an essential part of the eye, allowing it to focus on objects at different distances. It is located towards the front of the eyeball and resembles a deflated ball. It is clear and transparent, allowing light to enter the eye

  • •  The lens’s job is to focus light to create the sharp images we see. It’s very flexible, so it can change shape: it can stretch and thin out when focusing on distant objects or shrink and thicken when focusing on near objects

  • •  This movement bends the light to focus it properly on the retina, a thin layer of tissue that lines the back of the inside of your eye. The retina absorbs the light into your eye and sends this visual information along the optic nerve to your brain, interpreting this as the images we see.

  • To see these objects clearly, our cornea and lens must work together to bend the light to focus directly on our retina. However, short-sightedness occurs when the light focuses in front of the retina instead of on it, which can happen in two key ways:

  1. When the shape of the cornea or lens changes the way that light enters the eyeball, for example, when the cornea is too steeply curved, or the lens is too thin

  2. When the eyeball grows longer than normal from front to back

Causes And Risk Factors For Short-Sightedness

  • Research has found that people are more susceptible to developing short-sightedness if other family members have had the condition, but the influence of genetics on short-sightedness is considered to be quite small - and several lifestyle and environmental factors can make you more likely to develop the condition, especially at a younger age, including:[4]

  • •  Near work: Children and adolescents who spend much time on ‘near work’, such as reading, writing, sewing or devices, have much higher rates of near-sightedness. One study found that school-aged children who spend 7 hours or more using screens per week can triple their risk of developing short-sightedness.[5]

  • •  Limited light exposure: Children who spend more time outdoors are much less likely to develop short-sightedness. Scientists believe this is because the sun’s natural UV rays and vitamin D help the organs within the eye to release chemicals to encourage healthy growth and development [6],[7],[8]. Interestingly, studies have found that as little as one extra hour of sunlight a day can slow the progression of short-sightedness in children.[9],[10]

  • •  Gender: Females have slightly higher rates of short-sightedness than males[11]

  • •  Age: People are most likely to develop short-sightedness as the shape of the eyes is still developing between the ages of 6 and 14, which can continue to deteriorate until their early 20s.[12]

  • •  Diabetes: Having diabetes can put you at greater risk.[13]

Short-Sightedness Treatment

  • The most common treatments for short-sightedness are eyeglasses or contact lenses, which can compensate for the abnormal shape of your cornea or lens or the elongation of your eye by changing the focus of light as it enters your eye. After conducting a painless comprehensive eye exam, your optometrist can prescribe and fit the right lenses to help you see as clearly as possible. The strength of your lenses will depend on how far you can see clearly, and depending on your test results, you may need to wear corrective lenses all the time or only during certain activities, such as driving.

  • Sometimes, people may wish to undergo laser eye surgery to correct short-sightedness. If you have concerns about your vision, the first step is to make an appointment to see your local optometrist, who can assess your eye health and visual acuity with a comprehensive eye exam. From there, optometrists can manage various eye and vision concerns. They can refer you to a recommended ophthalmologist to address serious eye concerns or discuss surgical options.

Prioritise Your Eyes Today With Quality Glasses From A Trusted Optometrist

  • Correcting short-sightedness starts with a comprehensive examination with your optometrist, who assesses your vision, identifies any problems or disturbances, and gets to know your lifestyle, work requirements and various other key factors combined to give you an optimal lens prescription. Our team is meticulous in the way we work, pays careful attention to detail, and involves you in every aspect of your care and prescription, so you know exactly what you’re getting and how it will work to best support your vision.

  • Once you have your prescription, eyeglasses and contact lenses may be further optimised by selecting coatings and other protective features, such as polarised lens coatings to reduce UV glare, anti-reflective coatings that are easy to clean, blue light lens coatings for screen use, or lightweight safety lenses to best match your profession. We’ll discuss all of these options with you at your appointment.

  • As a team dedicated to helping you get the most out of your eyesight, we offer high-quality lenses from leading manufacturers who use innovative technological advancements to help create the best eyewear products. You’re in the best hands with us.

Perfectly Matched Frames

  • While your optometrist-prescribed lenses will help improve your vision and promote your eye health, we understand that choosing the right frames is very important to our clients who want to feel confident and like themselves in their eyewear. This is why after you have your lens script, you’ll select the best frames together with the help of our expert team out of our vast selection.

World’s Thinnest Lenses

  • With many prescriptions requiring thicker lenses, we proudly offer the world’s thinnest plastic lenses for premium comfort without compromising vision. They are called the S-line lenses, and they solve several common problems of thick lenses, such as being heavy and slipping down the nose, and generally being more difficult to wear. Instead, we use innovative technology to prescribe perfectly scripted plastic lenses that reduce thickness and weight without compromising quality.

Lenses & Coatings

  • We’re proud to be trusted by thousands of Australians every year. To help you know what your high-quality eyewear with us could look like and feature, click on the titles below to see some of our common coatings, lens types, add-ons and benefits we offer. Remember, your eye care professional will be with you every step to help you get the best prescription and glasses, ensure they are suited to your lifestyle and daily activities, and, importantly, that you love how you feel in them.


To book your comprehensive eye exam or to purchase a new pair of frames or contact lenses with our trusted and friendly optometry team, contact one of our local clinics here.


[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6688418/

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4675264/

[3] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0161642016000257

[4] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4675264/

[5] https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0189774

[6] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23644222/

[7] https://www.karger.com/Article/FullText/501937

[8] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24970253/

[9] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23462271/

[10] https://iovs.arvojournals.org/article.aspx?articleid=2266489



[13] https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1600-0420.2007.01104.x