Hyperopia, or long-sightedness, is a condition in which the focussing parts of the eye are not strong enough, so light is not focussed onto the retina. This results in blurred vision that is usually worse at shorter distances. A small amount of hyperopia may not be a problem because the lens in the eye can compensate for this, but if there is a significant amount of hyperopia, the effort of focusing (called accommodation) can lead to symptoms. Symptoms can include eyestrain or headaches, as well as blurred vision. Reading is more difficult and school work can be affected.
A comprehensive eye examination is needed to determine the extent of hyperopia and whether it is causing a problem. In general, young people who are slightly hyperopic do not have problems. If they do, they may need spectacles, mainly for close work such as reading and using computers. Older people, or young people with significant hyperopia, often have problems because focusing requires more effort. Their vision is more likely to be blurred, especially for close objects. They usually need spectacles for reading and sometimes for distance vision as well. If you or your child suffers blurred vision or symptoms of eye strain, it is important to have an eye test to determine if hyperopia is the cause.
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