Hyperopia – A Common Refractive Error
Hyperopia is also known as farsightedness. It is a vision condition considered as a common refractive error. This condition happens when objects are seen clearly from a distance as compared to near objects. People however experience hyperopia and its corresponding symptoms quite differently. In some cases, mild farsightedness may not be noticed, whereas high hyperopia on the otherhand may affect vision quite significantly.
Causes of Hyperopia and Some of its Risk Factors
How does hyperopia develop? And what are the risks of this condition when not treated properly?
Hyperopia develops in the part of the eye that focus images behind the retina instead of on the retina. This results to blurred vision when objects are viewed up close. Farsightedness occurs when the eyeball is too short. This prevents incoming light from focusing directly on the retina. Other causes may include irregular shape of the cornea or lens.
A person who is farsighted tends to see objects clearly from a distance while near objects are seen blurry. Although mild cases of hyperopia may not be noticeable, this condition may affect day-to-day activities such as reading or driving.
Farsightedness may occur in both children and adults. Recent studies have shown that around 5 to 10 percent of Americans have hyperopia. Children whose parents are farsighted are more likely to develop this refractive error over time.
Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment
What are the symptoms of hyperopia and how is it diagnosed?
Although symptoms of farsightedness vary from one person to the other, the most common symptoms are blurred vision on near objects, eyestrain, squinting, headaches, and difficulty to see clearly at night.
A comprehensive dilated eye examination, which is designed to evaluate good vision and diagnose symptoms of refractive errors is recommended to determine if a person is farsighted. An eye care specialist can perform this examination. Accepted treatment options for hyperopia include prescription eyeglasses, contact lenses, or refractive eye surgery.
1. Facts About Hyperopia, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health
2. United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC)