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Is Myopia Genetic?

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A woman holding out a pair of glasses in front of her face that help her see clearly due to myopia.


Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a common vision error that makes distant objects blurry. According to the International Myopia Institute, the condition affects approximately 30% of the US population, and its prevalence is increasing globally.

Many people wonder if myopia is genetic or if it can be inherited from parents or other family members. The short answer is yes, genetics can play a role in myopia development. However, other environmental factors can contribute.

Genetic Factors Affecting Myopia

Myopia is a complex condition with multiple contributing factors. While genetics put you at a higher risk for developing myopia, it is not completely responsible for the development of myopia.

Family History & Genetics

Studies have shown that individuals with a family history of myopia are more likely to develop it as well. This is due to genetic predisposition, meaning specific genes can increase the risk of myopia.

Having one parent with myopia doubles your risk, and having 2 parents with myopia increases the risk by 5 times.

Specific Genes Associated with Myopia

Research has identified several specific genes associated with myopia development. These include genes that contribute to eye growth and development, such as those related to the size and shape of the eye.

One gene in particular, “gene 4q25“, has been linked to severe myopia. This gene is responsible for regulating the growth of the eye, and mutations in it can lead to eye elongation, causing nearsightedness.

Environmental Factors Affecting Myopia

While genetics play a significant role in myopia development, there are also environmental factors that can contribute to its onset.

Excessive Near Work

Spending too much time doing near work, such as reading, writing, studying, or using electronic devices up close, is a major risk factor for developing myopia. This is especially true in children and adolescents whose eyes are still growing.

Lack of Outdoor Time

Studies show that time outdoors and in natural light can help prevent myopia or slow its progression. Being outdoors exposes the eyes to varying levels of bright light, which supports healthy eye development.

Other Factors

Other potential environmental factors include a lack of vitamin D and a diet high in processed foods, but more research is needed to fully understand their impact on eye growth.

How to Prevent Myopia

While there is no guaranteed way to prevent myopia, parents can take steps to help reduce their child’s risk and manage the condition if it does develop.

Encourage Outdoor Time

Encouraging children to spend time outdoors in natural light can help decrease their chances of developing myopia. Try limiting screen time and promoting outdoor activities.

Monitor Screen Time

Limiting children’s time on electronic devices can also help reduce their risk of myopia. This is especially important for young children whose eyes are still developing.

Take Children for Routine Eye Exams

Regular eye exams are crucial in detecting myopia early on and managing its progression. Children should have their first eye exam at 6 months, then again at 3 years and before starting school.

A young girl making a heart shape with her hands and holding it over her eye.

Myopia Control Methods

Atropine Eye Drops

For children who are at high risk or already developed myopia, atropine eye drops can be prescribed by an optometrist. These eye drops help relax the muscles in the eye and slow myopia progression.


Orthokeratology (ortho-k) uses custom-fitted contact lenses worn overnight to temporarily reshape the cornea, which improves vision during the day and slows myopia progression.

Abiliti Overnight Vision Correction

Abiliti Overnight Therapeutic Lenses are FDA-approved ortho-k contact lenses. They’re designed to be safe and comfortable for children. 

Euclid Lenses

Euclid lenses are FDA-approved contact lenses to help slow the progression of myopia. The lenses are made specifically for your child’s unique eyes and are designed to be worn overnight to gently reshape the cornea. Once removed in the morning, your child should have clear vision all day.

CRT Lenses

CRT (Corneal Refractive Therapy) lenses offer a non-invasive solution for myopia control. These specialized lenses are worn overnight, gently reshaping the cornea while sleeping, allowing for clear vision during the day without the need for glasses or contact lenses. By temporarily altering the corneal curvature, CRT lenses aim to slow down the progression of myopia in children and adolescents.

Myopia Glasses

There are various glasses designed to help relax the eyes at reading and screen use to enhance myopia management efficacy. Ask our eye doctors what is best suited for you.

MiSight Soft Multifocal Lens

MiSight 1 day lenses are FDA-approved and clinically proven to reduce myopia progression. They feature a bullseye-shaped design. The central zone corrects vision, while the outer rings help manage light focus within the eye to help reduce myopia progression.


Your child’s optometrist can also prescribe myopia-control eyeglasses. They use multifocal lenses with a center zone (sometimes the upper half of the lens) for single vision correction and an outer zone (sometimes lower zone) to refocus peripheral light and slow myopia.

Myopia Control Solutions at Golden Vision Optometry

While there is no cure for myopia, several effective myopia control methods are available. It is essential to consult with an eye care professional to determine the best treatment option for your child.

Golden Vision Optometry offers several options for myopia control. Our team of experienced optometrists will work closely with you and your child to create a personalized treatment plan that suits their needs and lifestyle.

Book an appointment today.

Written by Golden Vision

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