If you are experiencing distorted or blurry vision as a result of astigmatism, it can be cause for concern. And if you are one of the thousands of people in the US diagnosed with astigmatism, you’re likely to have questions. Check out the answers to the most frequently asked questions about this condition below.
What is astigmatism?
Astigmatism is a vision condition in which light entering the eye is not able to be brought into a single focus. This results in blurred vision at all distances. Astigmatism often occurs in conjunction with farsightedness and nearsightedness.
What causes astigmatism?
Usually, astigmatism happens when the front of your eye (cornea) is more oval than round, which does not allow light to focus on the back of your eye (retina) properly. Astigmatism can be hereditary in some cases, or it may be a result of pressure of the eyelids on the cornea or using your eyes for close work for extended periods of time. It can also be caused by trauma and scarring of the cornea, or as a result of a vision disorder called keratoconus.
What are the signs of astigmatism?
If your astigmatism is significant, you will experience distorted or blurry vision. If the astigmatism is mild, the signs and symptoms can include blurred vision at certain distances, headaches, fatigue and eye strain.
Is astigmatism common?
In may be surprising to learn that most people have some degree of astigmatism. But generally only people with moderate to highly astigmatic eyes require corrective lenses.
How is it treated?
Astigmatism can be treated with prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses. A number of surgical options are also available to alter the shape of the cornea. These include radial keratotomy (RK) and photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). Your eye doctor can determine which procedure is right for you.