Being Nearsighted About Myopia
Myopia, also known as “nearsightedness” has a very prosaic reputation. Those with myopia—sometimes referred to as myopes—can see nearby objects, but objects at a distance appear blurry. Instances of myopia are, it seems, on the rise. According to research by the National Eye Institute back in 2014, only 25% of the US population in 1972 between the ages of 12 and 54 had the condition. In 2004, that number jumped to nearly 42% of the population. Myopia’s role in leading to more severe vision disorders rarely receives the seriousness it deserves. It causes degeneration overtime, leading to more serious ocular disorders.
Earlier this month, the Huffington Post published an article citing a new myopia study by the Brien Holden Vision Institute. It showed over 100 million people in the US and Canada currently diagnosed with myopia, or high myopia. They project that by 2050, the number of sufferers will climb to over 320 million. Even more alarming, they theorize that myopia may be caused by environmental factors, rather than genetics. Exposure to digital devices numbered among the factors they listed.
The Long-Term and The Short-Term
Digital exposure can cause eye strain and other difficulties. The sobering suggestion that exposure to digital screens may cause long-term myopic damage is frightening. The short-term necessity to protect your eyes always made sense: without clear vision, and with discomfort, life becomes harder. With the suggestion of long-term effects, the necessity of protection becomes all the more pressing. No one wants to experience digital eye strain, but many simply deal with it. However, very few people would be willing to possibly sacrifice their vision in the future simply for the sake of convenience in the now.
Technology has hit a new strata of connectedness. Everyone plugs in at the beginning of the day. Once the day ends, they plug in again to relax. The weekend comes, and they plug in non-stop to keep up to date and stay connected. To rephrase a popular slogan from the 1960’s, everyone “plugs-in, tunes in, and never ever unplugs or tunes out.” Our world has reached a point where if you don’t stay digitally wired, you feel uncomfortable and out of the loop. Couple the ever-increasing amount of devices we stare at all day with the rapid growth of gaming and eSports, and you get a sea of people with eyes exposed to harmful blue light like the world has never seen before.
It has never been more important to protect yourself than right now. GUNNAR always unapologetically proclaims this important message, and we have no intention of stopping! Our entire business was founded on making sure you have the highest quality eyewear available that will help you avoid the adverse effects of digital eye strain and myopia. Want the facts? Regardless of your relationship with technology (unless you don’t use it at all, but then, how would you be reading this?) protecting your eyes is in your best long and short-term interest. Find out why today, and learn how to protect yourself from now on.