We believe that the answer is YES. If children use reading glasses for reading and other close work as soon as the first signs of nearsightedness appear, nearsightedness (which is also called "myopia") can be prevented. There is no need to sacrifice a child’s vision.
Based on Better Eyesight Without Glasses by William H. Bates (New York: Henry Holt, 1981), Chapter 24, "Fundamental Principles of Treatment", pp. 193-200. Note, this is a paraphrase, not a direct quote.
The means to better vision is through relaxing the eyes. Rest makes vision better, strain or effort makes vision worse. There are several ways to rest the eyes.
1. Close your eyes. While doing this, think of something agreeable.
2. Cover your eyes. Called "palming". If you cover your eyes so as to exclude all light, the eyes will be able to achieve a greater degree of relaxation. Cover both eyes with the palms of your hands, your fingers crossed on your forehead. Note: in order to be successful, you must be able to relax while palming. Some people cannot do this, and palming becomes counterproductive. The blacker the field you see, the more relaxed you are. But if you "try" to see black, this may cause more strain. Don't try to see black: it is better to imagine a concrete, familiar object or scene.
3. Observe the swing of things. As you move your gaze from one point to another, things seen should move in the opposite direction. For example, if you look at the upper left corner of the letter "H" and then shift your gaze to the lower left corner, the "H" should appear to move, or "swing" up. If it doesn't, this is a sign of strain. There are a variety of exercises to practice the swing. You can gently swing your whole body to the left and to the right, and watch a distant tree swing to the right and to the left, you can move just your head, or just your eyes. The better the vision, the shorter the swing can be made to be.
4. Use your imagination. By seeing things with your mind's eye, and remember them in precise detail, you increase your ability to see actual objects better. The perfect memory of any sensation can be produced only when one is free of strain. It also helps, when practicing with a test card, to imagine that the part of a letter that one is looking at is blacker than the rest of the letter, or to imagine a small letter within a small black spot of a letter. In this way you direct your mind to appreciating finer and finer detail.
5. Catch those flashes. When your eyes finally achieve a state of relaxation through swinging or palming, you will see a "clear flash"; paradoxically, the sight of everything in focus is such a surprise that it causes strain, and the blur returns. So before the clear picture blurs out, close your eyes and remember the image in its full sharpness and clarity.
6. Keep your vision centered. When you regard an object, only one small part should be seen best. This is because only the center of the retina -- the fovea -- has the best vision for detail. Farther away from the fovea, the retinal receptors get progressively less able to pick up fine detail. Therefore, trying to catch all the detail with all of your retina at once causes strain because it cannot be done! Instead of staring at the entirety of an image, restrict your attention to the smallest area that you can.
7. Enjoy the sun. Get out into the open and enjoy every sunny day. It is especially relaxing and stimulating to the eyes if you close your eyes and let the sun shine onto your lids as you sway back and forth.
8. Practice with a test card. Keep an eye chart on the wall. To practice, stand from 10 to 20 feet away, and read the smallest line that you can without straining. Then look at one of the letters on that line and close your eyes. Remember that letter -- go over every detail in your mind; shift from part to part, from curve to corner and so on. When you open your eyes, you will see not only that letter better, but also the one below it. If you find yourself staring at the letters, which results in the line becoming blurred as soon as it comes into focus, it is best to close the eyes before this can happen. When you open them, shift to another letter on the same line. If you close your eyes for each letter, you will become able to read the whole line. Practice every day for five minutes or more and keep a record of your progress.
Aldous Huxley -Famous advocate of the Bates method.
The lack of certain vitamins can cause vision problems. In countries that have poor food supplies, or if the wrong foods are constantly eaten, there can be vision problems. A deficiency of Vitamin A is a cause of Nictalopia (Night Blindness).
A deficiency in Vitamin A can cause dry eyes, night blindness, corneal ulcers and can even lead to blindness. Vitamin A has also been shown to prevent cataracts and may prevent blindness due to macular degeneration. Vitamin A is an antioxidant that is found in animal sources, such as liver and cod liver oil.
Beta-carotene is a carotenoid that your body converts into Vitamin A. Rich sources of beta-carotenoids are orange fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, sweet potatoes and cantaloupe.
Lutein and zeaxanthin are also carotenoids that may reduce the risk of developing cataracts and possibly macular degeneration. These two carotenoids are often found together in fruits and vegetables.
The best sources of lutein and zeaxanthinare green, leafy vegetables--especially spinach. Lutein and zeaxanthin are also found in kale, collard greens, and yellow and orange fruits and vegetables such as corn. There is currently no RDA for these two carotenoids.
I know a delivery driver who had very bad short sighted vision and worked behind a desk, one day something just happened in his eyes and he could see perfectly, I asked him how that was possible, he said there must have been a trapped nerve in his eye which corrected itself and now he can see again at age 42.
I have believe that you can exercise your eye muscles and make them focus better, I am just not dedicated enough to apply the Bates Method and I am not sure I fully understand it.
i have seen some cases of myopia.. but more dangerous is glaucoma, because in most people it happens that they are not aware of it present in them.. by the time they know, i makes a huge damage to eyes.. i came to know about this from glaucoma treatment sites... i would suggest one must do eye checkup every six months .. tc
Tue Aug 07, 2012 10:11 pm
Joined: 22 Feb 2006 Posts: 8599 Location: Fingerlakes - NY usa
That conversation triggered a long investigation wherein they studied everything published about glutamate damage in the eyes and brain. Glutamate is produced naturally in these organs, and when a molecule of sodium is added to it, it becomes MSG, a seasoning often used in Chinese food.
He quickly adds that the MSG, which gives some lovers of Chinese cuisine howling headaches, will not blind you. "Absolutely no evidence exists that MSG taken by mouth has anything to do with eye or brain damage in adults," Dreyer assures us.
People with acute closed-angle glaucoma often have a structural defect that causes a narrow angle between the iris and cornea where the aqueous humor circulates. Conditions that suddenly dilate the pupils may cause this shallow angle to close and precipitate attacks of acute glaucoma in susceptible people. Such conditions may include:
Certain drugs such as antihistamines, tricyclic antidepressants, some asthma medications (nebulized ipratropium), some anti-seizure drugs (topiramate)
For healthy eyes it is good to do some eye exercise. It is also good to put some cold water in eyes in the morning and wash eyes with cold water. Anyway all posts are very informative and i learned lot of things.