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More than 14 million adults in the U.S. are farsighted, which means they can see distant objects more clearly than they can see objects that are close up or near to them. For a person who is farsighted, close objects are hard to focus on and tend to appear blurry while objects that are farther away appear crisp and clear. People who have significant hyperopia may have problems seeing objects clearly at any distance. Farsightedness is also referred to hyperopia or hyperopic vision, and it can be corrected with contact lenses or glasses or with some types of refractive eye surgery like LASIK.
In normal vision, light that enters the eye is refracted by the eye’s clear lens and focused on the light-sensitive retina at the back of the eye. The retina collects and organizes this visual information and transmits it via the optic nerve to the brain, where the visual information is interpreted into the images we see.
But sometimes, the shape of the eyeball or the cornea (or both) can cause light to gather in front of the retina or behind it, and the images that form wind up appearing blurry as a result. Age-related changes in the eye’s lens can also result in these refractive errors. For most people, hyperopia occurs because one or both eyeballs are shorter than normal.
Some studies have found people with a family history of hyperopia may be more likely to develop it themselves.
Hyperopia can cause different symptoms depending on the severity of the refractive error and other factors, including other eye diseases or conditions that may be present. In addition to blurry near vision, some of the most common symptoms of farsightedness include headaches, squinting, and eyestrain.
The symptoms of hyperopia typically become more apparent with age; in fact, many younger people who have hyperopia (especially those who are mildly farsighted) may experience few or no symptoms until they get older. Hyperopia becomes much more common after age 40.
In addition to listening to the patient’s symptoms and taking a medical history, the eye doctor will perform a comprehensive dilated eye exam to determine the cause of symptoms. When hyperopia is diagnosed, the optometrist will perform other assessments to determine the ideal prescription needed to correct the problem. For patients who prefer contact lenses to eyeglasses, the cornea will be carefully measured to ensure the lenses fit properly. Patients who don’t want to wear corrective lenses might be good candidates for refractive surgery including LASIK to correct their vision problem.
As a leading optometry practice in Orland Park and the North Gallery District of Chicago, Wear Eyewear offers comprehensive eye care for patients of all ages, as well as a complete line of contact lenses and glasses. If you’re having a problem with your vision or if you haven’t had an eye exam lately, call our Chicago office at 312-255-1212 or our Orland Park office at 708-349-9327 and schedule an evaluation today.