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What is Astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a common refractive error of the eye, just as myopia and hyperopia are. A refractive error of the eye means that an imperfection is affecting the way light bends (refracts) as it enters your eye. The way your eye bends light determines how you will perceive objects both near and far.

For those who do not have refractive errors of the eye, their lens and cornea present as a round shape. If you have astigmatism, you will have an irregular eye shape (similar to a football). This is caused by differences in the growth and alignment of your affected eye.  

Who Can Develop Astigmatism?

In most cases, astigmatism tends to develop at a young age. If it is detected and treated early on in childhood, the progression of this vision problem is more likely to be prevented.

Sometimes, astigmatism may develop:

  • After a different eye disease develops
  • Post eye surgery
  • As a result of an eye injury


What Are the Symptoms of Astigmatism?

Symptoms commonly associated with astigmatism are:

  • Distorted vision
  • Difficulty with night time driving
  • Blurry vision
  • Headaches
  • Eye fatigue or eye strain


How is Astigmatism Treated?

Astigmatism is an easily treated with:

  • Eyeglasses and Contact Lenses – A typical course of treatment after your eye exam will be corrective eyewear. It’s purpose is to counteract the abnormal shape of your eyes’ cornea and lens, refracting light properly to allow for clear vision.
  • Refractive (Laser) Surgery – A long-term treatment for those who have astigmatism. If you are wondering about your candidacy, book an eye surgery consultation with our Optometrist.
  • Orthokeratology – A non-surgical form of treatment utilizing special rigid lenses that are worn overnight. The lenses allow your eye to breathe and retain moisture as you sleep, while simultaneously reshaping your cornea. When you wake up, your freshly shaped cornea will allow you to see distant objects clearly for most of your day.