Frequently Asked Questions about Astigmatism
Vision problems can occur for a variety of reasons. If you suffer from blurry vision, you may have a common problem known as astigmatism. If you may not know what that means, or what to do about it, check out the answers to these frequently asked questions on the topic from Carlson-Tillisch Eye Clinic, serving New Ulm and Mankato.
What Is Astigmatism?
Astigmatism belongs to a class of vision problems known as refractive errors. Refractive errors occur when light enters the eye in a way that prevents the eye from bringing light into clear focus. In astigmatism, irregularities in the cornea (or sometimes in the lens) cause this problem.
What Symptoms Does Astigmatism Cause?
Like other refractive errors, astigmatism tends to cause blurry vision. Unlike myopia (nearsightedness) and hyperopia (farsightedness), the blurriness doesn't occur only at one distance level. Any blurriness or distortion created by astigmatism affects your vision whether objects are close up or far away. Astigmatism can also reduce your night vision. Your efforts to combat the blurriness may produce eye strain symptoms such as squinting and headaches.
Why Do People Get Astigmatism?
Astigmatism is often present from birth as a trait passed down through families. However, you can also develop astigmatism later in life due to a surgery or injury that weakens or scars the corneal tissues. Disorders such as keratoconus can deform the cornea to produce astigmatism. Severe myopia or hyperopia increases your risk for astigmatism as well.
How Does My Eye Doctor Confirm Astigmatism?
Your eye doctor at Carlson-Tillisch Eye Clinic can diagnose astigmatism through visual acuity testing. Your optometrist may also use a technique called keratometry to obtain the details of your corneal curvature, noting the positions and degrees of any irregularities.
What Can I Do to Correct My Vision?
Once we have figured out your customized prescription, we can treat your astigmatism with eyeglasses or contact lenses. If you choose contacts, you may need toric lenses which are designed to remain stable on the corneas (instead of rotating during blinking, as other contacts often do). We also offer ortho-k lenses that gently and temporarily reshape your corneal contours as you sleep, allowing you to see clearly without assistance in the daytime.
We Have Your Astigmatism Answers in Mankato and New Ulm
You're never left with unanswered questions (about astigmatism or any other vision problem) when you trust Carlson-Tillisch Eye Clinic with your eye care needs. Call our Mankato or New Ulm location to set up an appointment with an optometrist on our team!