Long-sightedness (Farsightedness or Hyperopia)


If you can see objects at a distance clearly but have trouble focusing well on objects close up, you may be long-sighted.

Your optometrist may refer to long-sightedness as farsightedness, or by its medical names, hypermetropia or hyperopia. Hypermetropia causes the eyes to exert extra effort to see close up. After viewing nearby objects for an extended period, you may experience blurred vision, headaches and eyestrain. Children who are long-sighted may find reading difficult.

Hypermetropia is not a disease, nor does it mean that you have “bad eyes.” It simply means that you have a variation in the shape of your eyeball. The degree of variation will determine whether you will need corrective lenses.


Our ability to “see” starts when light enters the eye through the cornea. The shape of the cornea, lens and eyeball help bend (refract) light rays in such a manner that light is focused into a point precisely on the retina.

If, as in long-sightedness, the eyeball is too short, the “point of light” focuses on a location behind the retina, instead of on the correct area of the retina, known as the fovea. Consequently, at the point on the retina where a fine point of light should be focused, there is instead a disk-shaped area of light. Since light is not focused when it hits the retina, vision is blurred.


Hypermetropia most commonly occurs because the eyeball is too short; that is, shorter from front to back than is normal. In some cases, the cornea having too little curvature may cause hypermetropia. Exactly why eyeball shape varies is not known, but the tendency for long-sightedness is inherited. Other factors may be involved too, but to a lesser degree than heredity.


Convex lenses are prescribed to bend light rays more sharply and bring them to focus on the retina.  They bend light more sharply and bring them to focus on the retina. If you do not have other vision problems such as astigmatism, you may only need glasses for reading or other tasks done at a close range.

To determine the best avenue of treatment, your optometrist will ask a number of questions about your lifestyle, occupation, daily activities and general health status. For instance, you may be asked whether you frequently need good near vision. Providing candid, considered answers to the questions and working with your optometrist will help assure that your corrective lenses contribute to clear sight and general comfort.

Cameron Optometry recommends a comprehensive eye examination regularly to ensure that minor changes in vision are diagnosed and treated so that your vision will remain as clear and comfortable as possible. Contact us to book an appointment.

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