Hyperopia is an eye condition that is often referred to as farsightedness or long-sightedness. People who are farsighted have difficulty being able to focus on objects that are close up. This means that for activities such as reading, sewing and other close work vision is blurred.
The reason for hyperopia and a number of other vision impairments has to do with the shape of the eye’s cornea. Light enters the eye through the cornea and, if all is well, focuses on the retina and allows clear vision. If the cornea is not perfectly spherical or has some other flaw, clear vision is not possible.
When a person is farsighted, the rays of light enter the eye but do not focus on the retina. Instead they focus behind the retina. This means that the light falls outside of the sphere of the eyeball.
Another vision problem, astigmatism, is also caused by a lack of focus of light within the eyeball. The eyeball is divided into four sections known as meridians. If the eyeball is not completely spherical (round) the meridians are asymmetrical. This can mean that light is not accurately focused within the eyeball and vision can be blurry.
Sometimes a person may have hyperopia with astigmatism. This can happen if the eyeball is too short from the front to the back (causing hyperopia) and the meridians are unequal.
Hyperopia can also occur if the cornea’s curvature is not deep enough to bend light rays correctly. Another cause of hyperopia is thinning of the lens of the eye which can be caused by a disease known as keratoconus.
How Can You Tell If You Have Hyperopia?
If you find you are constantly struggling to see objects that are close at hand, you may very well be suffering from hyperopia. If your eyes ache when you are trying to do close work such as reading, writing or sewing and if you find yourself blinking very frequently, you should suspect that you are actually farsighted.
If your eyes become dry very quickly when you’re doing close work, it is a symptom of hyperopia. Eyestrain and headaches are also common to both hyperopia and astigmatism.
Who Is Likely To Be Affected By Hyperopia?
You may be naturally farsighted from birth, or you may become farsighted as you grow older. You should realize, though, that age-related farsightedness is not really hyperopia. When you grow older and become farsighted, this is presbyopia. It is caused by a reduction of flexibility in the lens of your eye.
Far from being entirely age-related, hyperopia can even affect children. Very often, a child is born farsighted. This is especially true if one or both parents have been farsighted since birth.
Sometimes children who are born with hyperopia will outgrow it. Their vision may be self-correcting as they develop and grow. Nonetheless, it is very important to establish an early habit of having your child’s eyes examined by an optometrist at least annually. Twice a year is better.
If your child does have a problem with hyperopia with or without astigmatism, it can worsen and lead to more serious problems. For example, untreated hyperopia can become lazy-eye.
What To Do?
It may not surprise you to know that the answer to the question of what to do about hyperopia with astigmatism is the same as the answer to any question concerning your vision. Don’t leave it to chance, and don’t try home remedies. See your optometrist for a proper exam, diagnosis and treatment.