Hyperopia (Farsightedness)

Hyperopia or Farsighted means FAR vision is clearer than close vision.

  • The eye is shorter or less curved than normal causing light to focus behind the back of the eye (retina).
  • There is a genetic tendency for hyperopia.
  • Moderate to severe involvement is often present from birth, thus children should have an eye examination between 1-3 years.
  • There is a high risk of developing a permanent lazy eye amblyopia if undetected.
  • IT CAN BE EASILY MISSED DURING A SCHOOL VISION SCREENING.
  • Farsightedness is usually NOT progressive and can sometimes diminish during adolescence.
  • It is NOT considered an eye disease. A hyperopic eye is a healthy eye which focuses light slightly off target.
  • Farsightedness is corrected with glasses, contact lenses, or LASIK (limited cases).

FARSIGHTED EYE; often one can still have 20/20 vision for distance, but causes eyestrain when reading.

 

SYMPTOMS

  • Difficulty focusing on objects closer than 2 feet
  • Tired eyes, headache, or eyestrain after reading or computer work
  • Red or watering eyes especially when performing close tasks
  • One turned-in eye, especially in infants and children
  • Poor reading and/or school skills
  • Poor comprehension
  • Reluctance to do homework or close vision tasks

Hyperopia and Children 

  • Infancy:
    Hyperopia is often present at birth and should be addressed within the first year or two of life. Failure to do so could result in poor eye development. This can lead to a crossed and/or lazy eye or amblyopia
  • School age:
    Hyperopia can only be diagnosed through a comprehensive eye/health examination. Hyperopia often goes undetected, and its symptoms are very subtle to nonexistent. Even though small amounts of farsightedness can be normal, it can adversely affect a child's school performance. Sometimes the only difference between a struggling and a confident student is a pair of reading glasses. Kids with even up large amounts of hyperopia WILL pass school screenings. Because of this, the Illinois Optometric Association was instrumental in having Illinois pass a law requiring all children to have a comprehensive eye exam before entering kindergarten.

TREATMENT


GLASSES:

  • As with other refractive errors, corrective lenses are prescribed to help focus light more effectively on the retina. Depending on the degree of hyperopia, glasses may be needed all of the time for clear vision. If the degree of impairment is slight, glasses may be needed only for reading and computer vision.
  • Sometimes bifocals are given to children to help them better function in school so they don't have to keep taking their glasses on and off when looking at the blackboard.
    Often, a simple pair of reading glasses can be the difference between a child thriving or struggling.
 
Farsightedness in children can be the reason for poor reading skills and impaired learning.
  • CONTACT LENSES: Click here for more information.
  • REFRACTIVE SURGERY (LASIK): Limited, and for adults only . Click here for more information.

 

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