What is hyperopia?

What is hyperopia?


Hyperopia, in other words – far-sightedness, is a vision problem where the light is focused behind the retina causing a blurry image. Under normal conditions, the light focused by the eye’s lens and cornea is on the retina. However, a focus exactly on the retina can be a perfect condition which is not usual. The average person is slightly hyperopic. This common vision problem is seen among a fourth of the population. Hyperopic people can see distant objects clearly but find it difficult while focusing on objects up close. Hyperopia can also be referred as ‘hypermetropia’.


How does this affect vision?

It is the effort on focusing relative to the amount of hyperopia leading to various symptoms. Although a hyperopic person could have normal vision but as the degree of this eye condition increases the harder it gets for the person to focus. Blurry vision for up close objects is caused just because of the effort in focusing. This focusing process leads to headaches and tired eyes especially after a lot of visual work. Reading gets difficult with hyperopia.


What causes hyperopia?

The size of the eyeball is usually shorter than normal which can cause hyperopia. Due to the smaller size, the light entering the focuses behind the retina. Besides, hyperopia is often considered to be hereditary.


Does hyperopia change with age?

It usually increases but not all the time. As we get older, focusing on closer objects gets more and more difficult. Those with hyperopia face trouble sooner and may need prescription glasses at an early stage as they have to focus more at the start itself.


How is it diagnosed?

Special tests such as retinoscopy and refraction help in diagnosing hyperopia. The reason why a letter chart can miss hyperopia is because a hyperopic person often can see well in the distance.


What do we do about hyperopia?

It is essential to consider the symptoms as the average person is a little hyperopic but doesn’t have problems. If they do have problems, eye exercises or spectacles can benefit them for activities such as reading or using computer screens. In terms of having a high amount of hyperopia, spectacles with suitable prescription lenses can correct the problem as otherwise focusing requires a lot more effort without spectacles. The other option is a refractive surgery such as a Laser Eye Surgery or Conductive Keratoplasty that may reduce or eliminate the need of wearing spectacles or even contact lenses.