Hyperopia (farsightedness)



Hyperopia or far sightedness means that your distance vision is great but your near vision or close up vision is blurry. People have varying degrees of hyperopia, in some cases if there is enough hyperopia it can overcome the eyes ability to focus near and distance objects. Hyperopia is very treatable and unlikely to cause lasting damage to the eye. Hyperopia is also very common affecting about one in ten people.

Hyperopia is caused by your eye being either too small or short or the cornea and lens which naturally focus light onto your retina being too weak. The cornea and crystalline lens work together to focus incoming light onto the retina. If the eye is too short or lens and cornea too week light will focus behind the retina instead of on the retina and near objects will therefore appear blurred.

Causes of hyperopia

Hyperopia is most likely as a result of genetics inherited from a hyperopic parent.

Symptoms if hyperopia

Hyperopia causes your eyes to work harder to see targets near and distant thus causing eye strain.

This becomes more problematic as we get older. Symptoms include:

  • Blurry vision when looking at near objects
  • Squinting to see better
  • Tension and fatigue
  • Headaches after reading and other detailed tasks
  • Aching sensation around the eyes

Children can develop strabismus (crossed eyes) and potentially amblyopia (lazy eye) as a result of undiagnosed hyperopia. If left undiagnosed this can contribute to problems learning to read and write.

Treating Hyperopia

Children, teenagers and other young people’s eyes can accommodate and compensate for hyperopia because their crystalline lenses are still very flexible. This can mean two things, one hyperopia can often go undetected and two small degrees of hyperopia are not always problematic.
As we grow older however our inherent ability to compensate for hyperopia diminishes and we find close work more bothersome.

Hyperopia can be treated fairly simply using spectacles and contact lenses. Other treatment options include laser eye surgery and orthokeratology.

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