Hyperopia is a refractive condition of the eye that results in light focusing behind the retina. When vision is perfect, light will focus through your cornea and lens to create a sharp image on your retina. However, when you have long-sight (hyperopia or hypermetropia), your eyeball is slightly shorter than normal or your cornea isn’t sufficiently curved, so the focus point for light will fall behind the retina. The extent of blur will depend on the flexibility of the natural lens in the eye which decreases normally with age.
Typically, this eye condition affects adults over 40, but it can also occur in children and babies. Hyperopia can be genetic or simply a part of the aging process as your eye lens gets less flexible and struggles to focus over time.
Hyperopia and 'Accommodation'
Hyperopia develops when your eye doesn’t focus light on the retina properly, which can happen for several reasons:
- Your eyeball is too short
- Your cornea is flat
- The lens inside your eye doesn’t focus normally
Young people can ‘accommodate’ their focus to overcome this long-sightedness and avoid the need for glasses. However, as you age, your ability to accommodate reduces so you won’t be able to see clearly without glasses.
Who's At Risk of Developing Hyperopia?
People of all ages are affected by hyperopia, but it’s common in adults over 40.
What are the Symptoms of Hyperopia?
Symptoms of long-sightedness can present in different ways. You may struggle to focus solely on nearby objects or find it challenging to see at any distance.
When significant and left untreated, hyperopia symptoms include:
- Tired, strained eyes after close-up work such as reading, writing or working with screens
- Noticing that close objects are blurred and out of focus
Children with hyperopia may not present with symptoms, but if left untreated the condition can lead to a lazy eye or squinting. Be sure to book your children in for regular eye exams to help spot and treat issues early on.
If you live in Cambridge or the surrounding area and are experiencing any of the symptoms of hyperopia, please book an eye exam with a Taank Optometrist today.
Hyperopia in Children
Most children are born long-sighted, which is thoroughly normal and doesn’t require attention. As the child grows, the eye grows too, the long sightedness lessens. However, if the eye grows too much, or the child wasn’t born with sufficient long-sightedness, they can develop myopia and struggle to see far away objects without glasses.
Diagnosing and Treating Hyperopia in Cambridge
Your Cambridge optician will be able to diagnose hyperopia as part of your annual eye exam. However, feel free to make an appointment at any time if you have concerns about your vision. Likewise, regular eye exams for your children will help you stay on top of changes to their vision as they grow.
Young people and children may not experience any obvious issues related to being long-sighted as their eyes often adapt to accommodate the problem.
Adults with hyperopia have a range of options available, including:
- Glasses with prescription lenses that re-focus light rays onto your retina properly.
- Contact lenses, which work in the same way but are invisible so good for sports, special occasions and every day.
- Laser eye surgery for adults is another option which gives you freedom from glasses and contact lenses.
Beautiful glasses are a simple, safe and stylish way to treat hyperopia, and are also suitable for young children.