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Children with farsightedness, also known as hyperopia,
have difficulty seeing things clearly up close , while objects
at a distance generally appear in focus.

For infants and young children, being mildly farsighted is
normal. In most cases, farsightedness gradually decreases
over the first ten years of life. As a child grows, their eyes
"grow" too, making the changes necessary to keep the
eye's focusing system in balance.

Farsightedness is due to the eyes inability to focus light on
the back part of the eye called the retina. Either the
eyeball is too short or the cornea, the clear front cover of
the eye, has too little curvature. This prevents the eyes
from being able to focus images properly resulting in
blurred vision.

The lens in the eye can change shape and adjust its focus
as objects move closer or further away. When looking at
objects up close, like a book or TV screen, the eyes
"accommodate" or change focus to make the image clear.
But with farsightedness, the lens needs to adjust more
than normal to bring things into focus creating a strain on
the eyes and resulting in blurred vision.

The eyes' ability to focus is linked to the system that
controls the direction the eyes point. In cases of extreme
farsightedness, the eyes are forced to use so much
additional effort to keep images clear that it causes an eye
to turn inward, resulting in a condition called
accommodative esotropia or strabismus.

The exact reason people develop farsightedness is
unknown, but heredity seems to play a role. A child whose
parent(s) or sibling(s) have farsightedness can also expect
to have the condition.

Farsightedness is generally treated with either glasses or
contact lenses.

Vision Topics