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Ophthalmology & Optometry/Minus lense and reading-writing??


Dear Sir,

My 8 years old son has been diagnosed with very mild myopia in right eye  and  low astigmatism in his left eye, last week. He has been advised by opthalmologist to wear his glasses for all activities, including reading and writing as well as all near works.

His prescription is as follows:

OD : Sph -0.50
OS : Sph +0.00, Cyl -0.50, Axis 150

My question is :

Why to use minus lenses for near works?
( I understand for far objects, parallel light rays need to be diverged before entering the eye for correcting shortsightedness. But while reading-writing or for any other near works light rays are already diverging, and if minus lenses are used in such condition that means bringing close thing even closer to eyes.)  

How does it help?

Please help me in clearing my doubts.

Thanks in advance.

Dear Deepshika,

Yes, for small minus powers which are spherical, there is no need for glasses for near work. However, a cylindrical error means that there is an irregularity on the corneal surface. If the child reads without correction, he/she may face headaches or eye strain.

Hence, many times glasses are advised for constant use.

However, check with the doctor who examined him if it is fine to avoid glasses for near work.

A child usually needs to be cajoled into wearing the glasses regularly so as to not compromise the lines of sight or vision or develop a lazy or amblyopic eye while growing up.

Your child can plan on wearing contact lenses in teens and we can plan a
Permanent correction with laser technology when older (18 years plus).
Till then you will have to work on your child to use glasses regularly, go for regular eye checks and keep the records safely.
You can also try eye exercises (though there is no research committing to their benefits completely, but no harm either). These are available on our parent website
Hope this information helps,
You can keep me posted on the progress.
Best regards,
Dr Anand Shroff

Ophthalmology & Optometry

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Dr Anand Shroff, MD, FICS


I can answer any question on eye care, expertise in Laser eye surgery, LASIK, Epi LASIK, cataract, glaucoma, keratoconus- corneal collagen crosslinking.


OF LASIK, we are one of the first centres to use the wavefront guided LASIK or custom LASIK procedures. I train doctors worldwide for these wavefront procedures, our centre is the referral centre for our Wavelight Laser Technologies, Germany in India.

ASCRS [American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery]certified by USA- Joint Commission International


MD Ophthalmology and FICS [Fellow of the International College of Surgeons]

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