Refractive errors stop the light entering in eyes to bend improperly due to their shape. This leads the patient suffering refractive eye disorder to experience a blurry vision. The causes behind refractive eye disorders generally range from the changes in the shape of the eyeball resulting from the change in the size of the cornea to the anomalies of a lens. Nearly, one to two billion people around the world are estimated to be suffering from refractive eye disorders. 25 % of Europeans and 80% of Asians are reportedly affected by the condition with the rates varying between different geographies around the world. The estimate for cases of refractive disorders that have not been treated stand at 660 million. This means 10 out of every 100 people haven’t been treated for the disorder. 9.5 million out of the 660 million people suffering refractive eye disorders have lost their sight due to lack of treatment.
Two of the most commonly occurring refractive eye-disorders are Near Sightedness or Myopia and Far Sightedness or Hyperopia. Near sightedness is supposedly the most commonly occurring refractive eye disorder with 15-49% adults and 1.2-42 % children suffering the condition. Farsightedness is known to be commonly occurring amongst children and elderly people.
What is Near Sightedness and Farsightedness?
Near Sightedness or Myopia:
Also known as Myopia or Shortsightedness, near sightedness leads the light reflected from an object to be focused in front of the retina instead of focusing on it. The length of the eyeball grows abnormally long or the lens of the eye becomes too strong. As a result of the phenomenon, one can see objects at a closer distance clearly but object that are far away appear to be blurred. Severe cases of Myopia might put patients at a high risk of glaucoma, retinal detachment, and cataract.
Causes of Myopia or Near Sightedness:
The causes of Myopia or Near Sightedness are uncertain. The underlying cause, however, is believed by the experts to be a conjugation of genetic as well as environmental factors. The condition can also be triggered due to activities that require individuals to focus closely on objects while working, spending larger amounts of times being outdoor and family history. Medical scientists are carrying out researches to figure out in case age, sex or ethnicity could possibly influence the occurrence of Myopia in human beings. Spending large amounts of time sitting in the front of the computeror reading and writing along with lack of exposure to sunlight may lead the situation to worsen further.
Symptoms of Myopia or Near Sightedness:
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As stated above, an individual that is suffering from Myopia can see things upto a near distance very clearly but his/her vision blurs out as the distance from the objects increase. If the extent of the disorder increases, the patient may experience discomfort in seeing objects at a short distance too. As the most common factor that influences Myopia is the increase in the length of the eyeball, the retina stretches out. Hence, myopic patients are at a great risk of developing holes in their retinae. The other commonly occurring symptoms are:
Difficulty in viewing faraway objects as they appear to be blurred.
Squinting of eyes in order to view objects at a distance properly.
Headaches caused due to strain on eyes.
Difficulty to read road signs while driving vehicles.
Farsightedness or Hyperopia:
Also known as Hyperopia, farsightedness leads the light reflected from objects to be focused behind the retina instead of focusing on it. The length of the eye balls grow too - short or the curvature or shape of the lens/cornea is improper. As a result of the phenomenon, one can see objects at a faraway distance clearly, but the ones that are at a closer distance appear to be blurred. Severe cases of Hyperopia might put patients at a high risk of developing accommodative or binocular dysfunction along with amblyopia and strabismus.
Causes of Hyperopia or Far Sightedness:
The underlying cause of Hyperopia could be the reduced converging power of the lens due to the improper and weakened functioning of the ciliary muscles. This condition can be triggered due to diabetes or tumors around the eye. It can also be caused due to hereditary factors. While Hypermetropia (farsightedness) can be inherited by a child from its parents, presbyopia (farsightedness) occurs with an increase in age.
Symptoms of Hyperopia or Farsightedness:
The symptoms of Hyperopia include:
Difficulty in viewing objects at a closer distance.
Patients will be able to view objects at a comparatively far away distance clearly.
Squinting of eyes in order to see objects at a close distance properly.
Discomfort in reading small fonts.
Laser eye surgery is the best corrective treatments for refractive disorders
If you are suffering from refractive disorders such as near or farsightedness, undergoing a laser eye treatment is the best option for you. The first ever laser eye surgery dates back to over three decades. However, it has witnessed dramatic advances in the recent past. Laser eye surgery is one area of ophthalmology that is experiencing constant improvement with the use of newest technologies and latest surgical equipments.
Laser eye treatment includes a variety of surgical procedures to reshape the cornea in order to treat varied type of refractive eye disorders.
For people suffering near sightedness, the aim of performing laser eye surgery is to reduce the curvature of the steep cornea and hence reducing the focal power of the eye. The images that were being focused in the front of the retina earlier are made to reflect directly on to it.
For people suffering far sightedness, the surgeons carrying out the laser eye surgery aim to steepen the patient’s cornea along with increasing its focal power. The images that were being focused behind the retina earlier are made to reflect directly on to it.
If an expert surgeon carries out the laser eye treatment on a patient that qualifies all the requisites of the procedure cases are rare that any laser eye surgery side-effects will arise.
Easy finance options are available at various ophthalmology centers for patients that wish to undergo laser eye treatments. Apart from that, laser eye surgeryis an out-patient procedure that doesn’t require patients to stay back at hospital post the surgical procedure.