What you need to know about astigmatism

Astigmatism is a common visual issue caused by corneal defect refractive errors. In astigmatism, the cornea or lens, which is the anterior surface of the eye, has an irregular shape elliptical curvature, like a football. Astigmatism is one of the main types of refractive errors that many people experience. This refractive error can change the manner in which light gets on your retina or refract light and interpret vision at all distances. This leads to blurred or distorted vision problems in those people with astigmatism symptoms. The cornea or lens of the eye is usually smooth and uniformly curved in all directions. This ensures that the light rays that fall into the cornea focus light in all directions. Symptoms of astigmatism may include blurry vision, photosensitivity or headaches. Corneal astigmatism occurs when the cornea is misshapen. What causes astigmatism is not entirely clear, though many attribute genetic factors and the most extreme cases may require refractive surgery to restore regular eye shape.

Types of Astigmatism

Myopia

When the cornea is curved excessively or when the eye is very long than expected it leads to myopia. Individuals experiencing this condition, the light is focused before the retina rather than focusing on the retina. This leads to a blurred vision of long-distance items.

Hyperopia

This condition transpires when the curvature of the cornea is less or when one’s eye is shorter than normal. This condition is the inverse of myopia, where the light is focused behind the back of the retina, creating a blurred vision of close items.

Mixed Astigmatism

Here, the light rays reach two focal points, one of which is in front of the retina and the other behind the retina.

Causes of Astigmatism

In most cases, this disorder is inherited, i.e. it is transmitted from one generation to another. In addition, it is as well common in individuals who spend most of their time in front of the computer or participate in some activities such as embroidery which subjects the eye to constantly focus light and causes blurry vision. Symptoms may include headaches as well.

Circulatory issues caused by stress and tension are as well as causes of astigmatism. In this case, an accumulation of stress and tension in the neck muscles can lead to a restriction of blood flow to the head and eyes.

Diabetes is another leading factor because certain individuals with this condition might develop a type of astigmatism referred to as lenticular astigmatism. For this situation the patient’s cornea is normal and the only anomaly is in the form of the lens. High blood sugar levels can adjust the shape of the lens and affect vision. This condition is transient as the shape of the lens come back to normal after effective treatment.

Some kinds of surgery or an eye injury that causes scarring can also cause astigmatism. Your eye doctor will know how to diagnose astigmatism and your visual acuity.

Symptoms of astigmatism

The most common symptoms of astigmatism include;

  1. Blurred or distorted images at short or long range
  2. Photosensitivity
  3. Headache
  4. Narrowed eyes (such as an attempt to see an object more clearly),
  5. Eye fatigue (when the eye is forced to focus for a long time).

Astigmatism Treatment

You should consult your ophthalmologist to perform a complete eye exam that includes astigmatism testing and visual acuity. Symptoms may vary and people with astigmatism may experience different astigmatism symptoms which can be similar to other vision problems. Depending on the seriousness of astigmatism, your specialist may give you a corrective lenses or rigid contact lenses to solve the condition and suggest treatment options. Regular eye exams can help to judge your condition and ensure you have the right solutions for what you need.

Orthokeratology

This is another method to treat astigmatism, and it’s a pain-free process. It includes wearing a progression of uniquely created rigid gas permeable (RGP) contact lenses are being used to constantly reshape the corneal curvature. The procedure can be compared with the use of braces to straighten curved teeth.

Laser medical procedure

In severe cases, eye surgery or laser surgery may be suggested as a treatment to regain clear vision. There are three common types of refractive surgery that change the condition of the cornea by removing a little amount of tissue from the eye. This is done with an exceptionally centered laser beam around the eye surface.

Individuals with astigmatism are lucky to have a broad range of options available to treat the disease. With the help of Ewing Optical ophthalmologist, you can choose the treatment that best suits your visual and lifestyle needs. Regular eye exams can be very helpful in maintaining eye health.
For a consultation and to schedule an appointment contact us today at (561) 798-0244

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