Astigmatism 101

When it comes to understanding a widespread vision issue like Astigmatism- everything seems unclear. From astigmatism causes to its daily affects on your eyes, it’s hard to know what to believe! Therefore, we’ve created an easy-to-understand guide which will help even the most inexperienced glasses-wearer understand what having an Astigmatism really means.

Your Eye With an Astigmatism.

An Astigmatism isn’t like a cold, or pink eye- there is no medication that will magically make your Astigmatism disappear. Like those suffering from myopia or hyperopia; an Astigmatism is the imperfect way in which your eyes receive and focuses light.

Is My Eye a Funny Shape?

Technically no, your eye shape is fine-it’s your cornea- specifically one meridian of your cornea that is misshaped. Naturally your cornea is a perfect circle, but a cornea with an astigmatism has one of its meridians slightly more curved that the meridian to its 90 degree angle; turning a naturally round cornea into a football shaped cornea.

A football shaped cornea causes light to be focused on several different areas within the eye as opposed to one specific point on your retina.

Are All Astigmatisms the Same?

No! In fact there are a few different types of Astigmatisms all of which stem from these two primary ones:

Regular Astigmatism: It might sound counter-intuitive, but in a “regular” Astigmatism the principal meridians are perpendicular to each other- creating a football shape out of your cornea.

Irregular Astigmatism: This type of Astigmatism is classified by scarring on the cornea. Scarring like this is typically the outcome of an eye injury of from keratoconus.

Your Astigmatism can also be defined by your principal meridians, if one is myopic your astigmatism is coined as “Myopic Astigmatism,” if one of your principal meridians is hyperopic your considered to have a “Hyperopic Astigmatism.” But, if one of your meridians is nearsighted while the other is farsighted your Astigmatism is called, “Mixed.”

Do I Have an Astigmatism?

If you had an Astigmatism you’d probably know already. Astigmatisms can be easily detected during your routine eye exam- they’re that easy for your optometrist to diagnose.

Can I Wear Contact Lenses?

Eyewear companies have since met the needs of those suffering from Astigmatism. By creating Toric lenses Astigmatism sufferers are offered an additional cylinder lens designed to create a balance between the two principal meridians.

Other corrective options, such as LASIK are available upon consultation with your optometrist.

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