What Is Hyperopia?

If myopia is nearsightedness, its opposite is hyperopia, or farsightedness. People with hyperopia have difficulty seeing objects when near. However, they can see well if things are afar.

Hyperopia is considered normal. As we age, we tend to develop near vision problems. This is especially true as we approach middle age where the lenses in our eyes start to thicken. As a result, they loses their flexibility. In turn, we lose our eyes’ ability to focus on objects regardless of distance.

With the thickening of the lenses and the resultant loss of flexibility, our vision will tend to suffer and we lose our ability to center our sights on objects from varying distances. This condition will gradually become noticeable. It is usually around age 40 when we start to realize that we have to hold a book farther away to be able to focus on the words and be able to read it clearly.

To see if you have hyperopia or not, try this very simple test. Hold a newspaper near your eyes. Now move it farther away by stretching your arms. Which position helps you see the words well? If you are able to focus more when you hold it farther back but have blurry vision when the paper is near, you have hyperopia.

In addition to hyperopia’s blurred vision, these problems are worse under dim light conditions or when a person is fatigued. Other symptoms of hyperopia include eyestrain and headaches.

Hyperopia is diagnosed with a general eye exam. The patient will be tested as to his or her visual acuity (or sharpness of vision) and refractive ability (or the ability to focus on objects placed at varying distances). In addition, the condition of the retina and the eye muscles will be tested.

Please consult your eye doctor regarding diagnosis and treatment of hyperopia.


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