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Does wearing glasses of a lower power help prevent increase of short-sightedness?

January 13, 2013

Here are 2 very frequently asked questions:

(1) I have been told it is better to under-correct my spectacle (or contact lens) power in order to prevent my short-sightedness from increasing. True?

(2) Can my vision get worse if I use under-correct spectacles (or contact lenses)?

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Blurred vision when wearing under-corrected spectacles

Here is the answer:

Using under-corrected spectacles or contact lenses will not stop your short-sightedness (myopia) from increasing. The best way to prevent the increase or slow the increase of your myopia is to have good eye care habits. In fact, there are 2 studies which show that wearing a lower power than what you need can actually cause an increase in myopia:

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Here is where you can learn more about good eye care habits to reduce the progression of myopia: http://drleesb.wordpress.com/2011/11/17/good-eye-care-habits/

So, it is a good idea to wear spectacles and contact lenses that give you good vision. This is especially important for children younger than 8 years old. This is the time when the brain and visual system is still developing. If the eyes and brain gets used to blurred vision by the use of under-corrected spectacles, this leads to the development of amblyopia (lazy eyes), that is, the eyes cannot see well not matter what power of spectacles you use as an adult.

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