EYECARE

Longsightedness

Longsightedness is also known as hyperopia and occurs because the eyeball is too short, so that the image at the back of the eye is focused behind of the retina rather than onto it.

Symptoms include near blurring. A person with longsightedness can generally see at distance, but cannot easily focus on near objects. People who are longsighted need to make a greater effort than normal to focus at both distance and near. This can result in eyestrain, headaches and poor concentration. The effort needed to focus may cause the eyes to turn in resulting in crossed eyes, sometimes a “lazy eye” may develop.

A longsighted child might get more tired when reading or writing or may suffer headaches when copying from the blackboard. They may experience blurry vision at times, more often when doing close work.

Longsightedness is corrected with a converging lens that will move the image forward onto the retina, helping near vision. The correction of longsightedness usually includes the use of spectacles (or sometimes contact lenses) which may be worn all the time or only for certain tasks. Both clarity and comfort are improved which results in better visual efficiency.

With age the focusing mechanism of the eye becomes less flexible requiring reading glasses earlier than is normal in middle age. Eventually there may also be a need for distance spectacles.