Glasses and intelligence?

Do more intelligent people wear glasses than not?

Why do some people associate wearing glasses with intelligence?

I don’t see any correlation between short sightedness and intelligence myself, but I’ve seen people make that assumption.

Is there a link?

Well, I wear glasses (actually, I wear contacts usually, but however…) and I’m also very intelligent. :slight_smile:
The only correlation I can see is that an intelligent person might make their sight worse by reading a lot in poor light , but I realise that’s hardly concrete evidence.

Well, if you have the patience and resources to do some comprehensive research, this page should give you a lot of pointers. Also, if you scan lower on the page, you will see:

Put simply:
He has glasses --> He must read a lot --> He’s so brainy!

  • aasna, happily myopic, happily brilliant.

Traditionally, the correlation was simply (well, approximately) that if you wore glasses, you could read and were therefore educated, whereas if you couldn’t read and were not educated, you probably could either get by without them or not afford to have them.

Since I wear glasses, I’m gonna go with a yes on this one. I’ll let others provide the cites, I’ll just use myself as an example.

I think the explanation that if you read a lot then you are more likely to become short sighted is the best so far. It does seem to makes sense. Thanks for the replies.

From an evolutionary perspective - perhaps people who have a genetic predisposition to myopia need increased intelligence to have a better chance of surviving and passed on the smart gene.

I know it doesnt work quite like that, but I couldnt be bothered writing it out properly.

Hey, I wear glasses and I’m a mooron. See cant even spell.

And what does all this say about those of us who wear glasses because we’re farsighted?

My glasses may not make me smart, but damn, do they make me sexy.

I started college at 12, and I have 20/15 vision.:smiley:

I have what may be an unusual perspective on this issue…

As a smart, bookworm-type kid, I had perfect vision until I was 12. I became nearsighted within a matter of months, upon starting junior high school.

After many years of wearing glasses, I ran across an old book that argued that most vision defects are induced by lifestyle, and can be corrected through proper eye exercise.
My own vision has now improved dramatically (it would be better if I didn’t spend so much time staring at this machine!).

If this book is correct (and it seems to be!), then we do, in fact, induce myopia by staring at close-up objects like books. The author also suggests that the stresses and hormonal changes of puberty can be a factor… this explains my eerie “20/20 to 20/70 drop in a few months” at the age of 12.

Or those of us who have astigmatism?

::Buries head in hands, stretching eyelids over corneas and distorting them resulting in ridiculously blurred vision::

Are you male or female?

Hold on, let me take a peek…

Yup. Definitely male.

Pol Pot seemed to think that people who wore glasses were intellectuals… so he had them killed.
Info here.

Vlad, I have a question. If you improve your vision with eye exercises, do you have to go get new prescriptions all the time to keep up with the state of your vision? I always wanted to try the exercises but I figure if I do, my glasses will screw it all back up.

I think that if my vision got to the point where I couldn’t read small print easily, but everything else was fine, I wouldn’t wear glasses if I didn’t read.

But I read, so I would wear glasses. I imagine that this would make people who don’t wear glasses have less readers proportionally than glass-wearing people.

Also, wearing glasses for work reasons is more important if you are doing clerical work, as opposed to less mentally challenging jobs. People who have those kinds of jobs are stereotyped as being more intelligent than laborers, even though it’s not necessarily true.

Well, it depends on whether you’re nearsighted or farsighted. A nearsighted person usualy doesn’t need them to read (unless they’re extremely myopic or have astigmatism) but they do need them to look around the room or see outdoors. Whereas a farsighted person might see fine until they try to read.


You’re right about the eyes clinging to the “crutch” of glasses. The best practice is to immediately begin wearing them as little as possible.

I kept mine nearby and used them only as needed… sort of like the way you would use binoculars. This way, it didn’t matter if the prescription was too strong, because I seldom looked through them long enough for my eyes to adjust to them.

Depending on your activities, you might be surprised at how well you can function without your glasses, even before your eyes start to show any improvement.

I found that, after awhile, I started to get spontaneous focusing… I’d be thinking about something else, looking at a semi-blurry world, and suddenly, BAM, 20/20 vision. Kinda freaked me out, the first couple of times! :wink:

You’re absolutely right, Vlad Dracul - mine are due for an update and don’t do much for me anymore. So most of the time I don’t bother to wear them.

I’ve had the spontaneous 20/20 thing too. Maybe more like 20/25 but in any case it was wierd and it was fleeting.

I heard somewhere that people with “multiple personalities” require different eyeglass prescriptions for their different identities. Not sure if it’s true but to me just as amazing as spontaneous 20/20 vision.

Hmmm, a theory!

Maybe with intelligent people brain power is enhanced in areas concerned with intelligence, to the detriment of visual areas.

Did I hear it, or dream it?