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What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a type of refractive error caused by irregularities in the shape of a person’s cornea which may be shaped more like an egg than a round sphere. This means that one meridian can be significantly more curved than the meridian perpendicular to it, so the eye fails to focus images sharply on the retina, resulting in blurry or distorted vision. Astigmatism can occur from birth or can develop gradually over time.

 Important to note:

  • Astigmatism is a common eye condition and can be easily diagnosed during an eye exam
  • Astigmatism is a refractive error and is not an eye disease
  • Astigmatism is simply a problem with how the eye focuses light

Astigmatism symptoms include eye strain, headaches, squinting and eye irritation. Astigmatism usually causes vision to be blurred or distorted to some degree at all distances.

Astigmatism is also classified as regular or irregular. Most astigmatism is regular corneal astigmatism, which gives the front surface of the eye an oval shape.

Irregular astigmatism can result from an eye injury that has caused scarring on the cornea, from certain types of eye surgery or from keratoconus, a disease that causes a gradual thinning and bulging of the cornea.

Getting tested:

Astigmatism is detected during a routine eye exam at your optometrist, using the same instruments and techniques used for the detection of nearsightedness and farsightedness.

Can astigmatism be corrected?

Most eyes with astigmatism can be corrected to give sharp vision using spectacles or contact lenses. All eye exams at Leslie Sessel Optometrist include the accurate measurement of your astigmatism in each eye. Regular eye exams are recommended to ensure that you have an up-to-date prescription and that your glasses provide you with the sharpest possible vision.

Book your eye exam with Leslie Sessel Optometrist today for fast diagnosis of astigmatism.

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