What is high myopia?

What is high myopia?

Wednesday, 20 February 2019
What is high myopia?

Myopia (or near-sightedness) is the most common cause of visual impairment and effects an individual’s ability to see objects that are further away. Some people have a more severe version of myopia, this is called high myopia.

Before we look into what high myopia is, we should understand what myopia is in general. Myopia occurs when the eyeball is elongated, affecting the focusing power of the cornea and the lens of the eye. This results in light rays focusing at a point of the eye in front of the retina, instead of directly on the retina's surface. Myopia generally begins in childhood, but generally stabilises in adulthood, the severity of the condition varies from person to person.

High myopia generally is used to describe short-sightedness that has a dioptre (D) of -5.00 or higher and as such is a more severe case of near-sightedness. This produces an uncorrected visual acuity of 20/400 or higher.  

best contact lenses for high myopia

What causes high myopia?

High myopia can start as early as childhood and individuals are generally at a higher risk if their parents are short-sighted. There is a growing body of evidence suggesting that increased screen use via tablets and smartphones and modern office working hours that require extended screen use, may be leading to an increase of the general population suffering from myopia.

High myopia doesn’t necessarily lead to more severe vision loss, however individuals who do have the condition have a greater risk of developing further eye-related conditions like; retinal detachment, glaucoma and cataracts. It is important that people with high myopia have eye tests regularly by their eye practitioner monitor the condition of their eyes.


Which contact lenses are best for high myopia?

High myopia can be corrected with glasses or contact lenses. Contact lenses with a dioptre of -5.00 or more are generally prescribed to correct high myopia. We have a wide variety of contact lenses that go as high as -12.00 for standard lenses and -20.00 for contact lenses such as Biofinity XR and for those who have astigmatism,Proclear Toric XR.

You can view our entire contact lens specification sheet here and check which contact lenses can be worn if you have a high myopia.  

high myopia

How is high myopia treated?

Prescription glasses and contact lenses are the most convenient way to treat high myopia, however, they are alternative options.

Orthokeratology, which involves wearing a specially fitted, gas permeable lenses which are worn overnight during sleep. The lenses reshape the cornea of the eye overnight, producing clearer vision throughout the day, without the need for corrective lenses. The lens must be measured and fitted by a qualified optician and is generally more expensive than normal prescription contact lenses.

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