Thanks to everyone who responded to my piece on eyesight. I’d like to share some of the emails I received on the subject. Andy McMullan writes in with a similar experience, Matt Webb tells the story of an eye exercise that gave similar results and Faisal Jawdat says that his eyes are getting better even after an infection.

A Similar Experience

Andy McMullan wrote that he had a similar experience. His eyes “had always been pretty good” until he “attended a masters degree course during which he became “increasingly nearsighted. It got to the point where I couldn’t drive safely, particularly at night, because I was struggling to read signs. Also text on the TV looked blurry.”

He went to an optician who told him he needed glasses and that his poorer eyesight was simply part of getting old, which Andy didn’t buy after such a dramatic change. The doctor “agreed it didn’t really make sense, but couldn’t offer an alternative explanation.” He went to another optician and got the same thing.

He got the glasses and wore them for a while but felt they “were just reinforcing the problem”. After a couple weeks of hour-long car commutes his eyes began “getting a lot better. I could read signs again, and I could read text on the TV. My eyes were pretty much back to where they were before the degree. I put the glasses away in a cupboard somewhere, and haven’t used them since. That was about 5 years ago.”

A New Technique

Matt Webb wrote in with a story of his own:

My sister almost had to wear glasses. Instead, the eye doctor prescribed her an exercise:

Hold a pencil at arms length. Focus on the tip. Move pencil, very slowly, closer to nose keeping it in focus as long as you can. Repeat about 10 times, every day, for about 6 weeks.

It was to increase the strength of her eye muscles, or something, and she was told that if it worked she wouldn’t need glasses.

That was about 4 years ago, and she’s never had to have glasses.

Interesting. I tried this excericise and I can feel my eyes straining. But when I try to look at my eye chart from a distance I’m finding it hard focus on the words — it’s not clicking like it did before. (Hopefully I’ll recover from this pretty quickly, but still, I wouldn’t recommended it to nearsighted people.) I think this technique might be for farsighted people (those who can’t see things close up). It would seem that my walking-backwards technqiue would be the nearsighted analog.

With an Infenction

Finally, Faisal Jawdat says he had a serious infection in his right eye which severely impaired his vision. However he says that when he relaxes and first wakes up the eyesight is better than “after i first try to focus on things.


Well, it does seem likely I’m not crazy about this and that there is something here. It’s disappointing that few people seem to know about this, althought Matt Webb’s story gives hope. I’ll keep following this so keep sending me your stories.

posted July 28, 2002 01:19 AM (Personal) #


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