May 3, 2023 | Eye Health Info

Understanding Astigmatism: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

If you’ve ever heard the term astigmatism and weren’t sure what it meant, you’re not alone! Astigmatism is a common eye condition that affects many people, but it’s often misunderstood. In this blog, we’ll share the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for astigmatism to help you better understand and manage this condition. 

What is astigmatism?  

Astigmatism occurs when the cornea (the clear front surface of the eye) or lens (the structure behind the iris) is shaped irregularly. Normally, the cornea and lens are smooth and evenly curved, allowing light to be focused precisely on the retina at the back of the eye. But in people with astigmatism, the cornea or lens is curved more in one direction than the other, causing blurry or distorted vision at all distances. 

Causes of astigmatism 

Astigmatism can be present from birth (congenital) or develop later in life (acquired). Some people are born with an irregularly shaped cornea or lens, while others develop astigmatism after an eye injury, eye surgery, or disease. Astigmatism is also linked to other eye conditions like myopia (nearsightedness) or hyperopia (farsightedness). 

Symptoms of astigmatism 

People with astigmatism may experience mild to severe symptoms, and symptoms may get worse if left untreated. The most common symptoms include: 

  • Blurry or distorted vision 
  • Difficulty seeing at night 
  • Eye strain or fatigue 
  • Headaches 
  • Squinting 

Treatment options for astigmatism

 The good news is that astigmatism can be easily corrected with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or refractive surgery. Eyeglasses and contact lenses work by compensating for the irregular curvature of the cornea or lens and can provide clear, crisp vision. Refractive surgery, like LASIK, can reshape the cornea to correct the underlying cause of astigmatism. 

Astigmatism is a common eye condition that can affect anyone at any age. But with proper diagnosis and treatment, it’s easy to manage and can be corrected with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or refractive surgery.  

If you’re experiencing any symptoms of astigmatism, schedule an appointment at Giles Eye Care in Portland! Don’t let blurry vision hold you back—let’s work together to get you seeing clearly and comfortably!