Have you recently noticed that your vision has changed? If so, you may be worried about whether or not you need glasses or whether a serious condition or eye disease is affecting your eyes. Many times changes in eyesight are the result of refractive errors. The symptoms of vision impairment will vary and are based upon the type of refractive error. The following are common types of refractive errors.
Not being able to see things that are nearby are a primary symptom of this type of refractive error. It is sometimes referred to as farsightedness. You may find yourself squinting when you are trying to read something, and you may even move printed material further away from your face in an effort to see it better. This type of refractive error is the result of light focusing or refracting behind the retina.
With this form of refractive error, you would likely notice that things that are further away from you appear blurry. This may cause you to squint as you try to focus in on distant objects. Myopia is commonly referred to as nearsightedness due to people with the condition being able to clearly see anything that is in close proximity. With this condition, light focuses on the front portion of the retina.
This condition is characterized by blurred vision regardless of where objects are located. People who experience this condition may think that they have extremely "bad vision" due to them having difficulties seeing everything. This refractive error is the result of light focusing on the retina directly. Unfortunately, when light focuses on the retina of a person with astigmatism, it does not focus evenly. This can be due to problems with the structure of the eyes. For example, an issue with the cornea or lens of the eye could impact the distribution of light across the retina.
Do not try to remedy changes in your eyesight yourself by buying over-the-counter reading glasses. This is because your eyesight could get worse, or you may experience eye strain. An eye doctor is the best resource to use for changes in vision. They can perform eye exams and determine if a refractive error or another issue is affecting your vision.
Eye exams may reveal that you have more than one type of refractive error. For example, you could have myopia and astigmatism. Your doctor can improve your vision by prescribing visual aids such as prescription eyeglasses or contacts, or you could be recommended for LASIK eye surgery if you are a good candidate.