Hyperopia is when the eye cannot properly focus on close objects, while distant objects may appear clearer. Children naturally have a lot of focusing power and may be able to see distant objects clearly, but continuous use of this focusing power may lead to visual complaints and, in some cases, headaches.
What is the Difference Between Hyperopia and Presbyopia?
In presbyopia, the lens in the eye hardens due to age and prevents the eye from correctly focusing on close objects and tasks like reading or threading a needle.1 Hyperopia occurs due to the eye itself being shorter than normal or the cornea being too flat. Like myopia, hyperopia is often genetic, whereas presbyopia is simply a result of aging.
Symptoms of Hyperopia
Common symptoms include eyestrain or discomfort when focusing on close objects or completing close-up tasks, such as reading or sewing. You may notice yourself squinting or developing headaches during these types of actions.
Note: Children with hyperopia can often grow out of it—as they get older their eyes grow longer, causing the hyperopia to fade. Children can, however, develop crossed eyes due to hyperopia. Eye care professionals can help correct this complication via specially designed eyeglasses.2
An eye care professional will be able to diagnose hyperopia. Eyeglasses or contact lenses are popular treatment options. You can also correct hyperopia by reshaping the cornea with LASIK or other refractive surgery.
Catch Hyperopia Early – Annual Comprehensive Eye Exams
You can catch and treat hyperopia early if you go to annual comprehensive eye exams with an eye care professional. It is recommended that children should have a full eye examination by the age of five—or earlier if a parent notices an inward or outward eye turn, squinting, or eye-rubbing.