Can Astigmatism Be Fixed with Glasses?
‘Stars in your eyes’ sounds like a line from a song. But for those who have astigmatism, it can be more of an annoying reality.
If this is you, fret not — astigmatism can be corrected with glasses. They can improve your vision, reduce headaches and fatigue, and even make everyday tasks like reading or driving more comfortable.
In this article, we’ll cover all you need to know about astigmatism and what you can do to keep the effects of its symptoms to a minimum:
Table of contents
- What is astigmatism?
- Can glasses help with astigmatism?
- How do you know if you need glasses for astigmatism?
- What type of glasses do you need for astigmatism?
- Where can you get glasses for astigmatism?
- What happens if you don’t wear glasses for astigmatism?
- Tips for choosing astigmatism eyewear
- Alternative astigmatism treatment options
Let’s get started!
What is astigmatism?
Astigmatism is caused by the irregular shape or imperfection of your lenses and is one of the most common vision conditions worldwide. This condition also impacts how you see objects at a distance and causes blurry vision. People with astigmatism typically experience difficulty focusing on near or far objects, headaches, squinting, and eye strain.
According to health experts, one in three people has some form of astigmatism. The prevalence rate increases with age, with 55.1% of those over the age of 70 suffering from astigmatism. In most cases, astigmatism is hereditary and can be present at birth. Sadly, there’s no cure for astigmatism, but there are treatments, such as glasses, that can help.
Can glasses help with astigmatism?
Yes – wearing glasses is one of the most common treatment options for astigmatism.
Once your eye doctor has given you your eye prescription, you’ll be able to order glasses with corrective lenses that are calibrated to meet the exact astigmatism prescription of each eye (because, yes – you can have a different degree of astigmatism in different eyes!)
When you put on these glasses, the lens will help to correctly refract the light onto your retina, resulting in a sharp image. This makes objects look clearer and easier to focus on.
In many cases, glasses are enough to improve vision and reduce other symptoms associated with astigmatism. This makes everyday tasks like reading or driving more comfortable for those suffering from the condition. Wearing glasses can also help reduce the eye fatigue that comes along with it.
In addition, driving at night can be dangerous for people with astigmatism due to the glare from headlights and streetlamps. Specialized glasses with anti-reflective lenses help reduce glare and make nighttime driving safer for those with astigmatism.
How do you know if you need glasses for astigmatism?
The only way to know for sure if you need glasses for astigmatism is to visit a qualified eye doctor. During your appointment, the doctor will conduct a comprehensive eye exam and measure the shape of your cornea. This includes the curvature of your cornea, pupil size, and other factors to ensure an accurate prescription that can correct your vision.
Of course, the level of astigmatism that requires glasses depends on the individual’s vision and degree of astigmatism.
Typically, you can see if you have astigmatism by checking the columns under “CYL” (cylinder) and “Axis”. If the doctor has written a number under these sections, then you have astigmatism.
- CylinderMeasures the extent of the astigmatism.
- AxisRepresents the location of the astigmatism on your cornea.
“Diopters” refer to the power of a lens. Mild astigmatism is usually diagnosed between .5 and 1.5 diopters. This level of astigmatism usually has mild symptoms, though it still requires glasses. Moderate to severe cases of astigmatism are diagnosed when the difference is 2.0 or more. This means you’ll have more obvious symptoms and will need glasses to reduce them as well as correct your vision.
Fair warning: if you don’t treat the condition, your blurry vision can worsen over time. This leads to more severe headaches, eye strain, and, worst, an inability to see clearly in crucial situations.
What type of glasses do you need for astigmatism?
You may be prescribed different types of glasses depending on your degree of astigmatism and your optometrist’s recommendation.
Typically, there are two main types of lenses: single-vision and multifocal lenses. Both provide a corrective prescription to help reduce blurry vision and improve clarity.
Single-vision lenses are the most popular type for astigmatism correction. They’re specially designed to focus light in the right way and reduce distortion. Multifocal lenses (i.e. bifocals and progressives), on the other hand, offer more of a customized solution by providing different lens powers for both near and far vision.
Sometimes, your optometrist might recommend you to wear glasses with an anti-reflective coating or blue light blockers. These types of lenses help reduce glare from headlights and streetlights while driving at night or protect your eyes from blue light emitted by computer screens.
Where can you get glasses for astigmatism?
You can get glasses for astigmatism from any optometrist or eye doctor. They’ll help you find the right type of lenses and frames to suit your needs.
If you have a unique case of astigmatism, visit any experienced optometrist to treat this condition, they can provide you with more detailed advice and a personalized prescription.
Here at Mouqy, we offer astigmatism glasses up to -4.00 astigmatism in a range of materials (Trivex, Tribid, and plastic) and in a range of lens indexes. This means you don’t need to suffer through thick, heavy lenses, even if you have a strong prescription.
What happens if you don’t wear glasses for astigmatism?
Simply put, your vision will likely worsen over time if you don’t wear glasses for astigmatism.
Blurry vision is the most common symptom of astigmatism, and it leads to headaches, eye strain, and difficulty in focusing on objects at a distance or up close on your tasks. All of these will potentially deteriorate if you let your astigmatism go untreated. In worse cases, it could even lead to amblyopia (lazy eye).
Tips for choosing astigmatism eyewear
Here are some tips to help you choose the right pair for your astigmatism:
- Choose frames that fit correctly and securelyFrames that fit snugly on your face won’t slip or slide when you move them. This can be achieved by getting to know which frame shapes that fit your face shape. As a bonus, the right pair will flatter your facial features as well.
- Choose a lens material that suits your lifestyleDifferent types of lenses come with their own benefits and features. If you’re active and lead an adventurous lifestyle, lenses made from impact-resistant materials like polycarbonate or Trivex should be your first choice.
- Consider anti-reflective or blue light protectionThe former is a type of coating that reduces glare, the latter protects your eyes from harmful blue light emitted by screens.
- Get the right optical center heightThis is the distance between the top of your frame and your eye level. A good optical center height will ensure that your glasses can correct your vision accurately.
- Ask your optometrist for adviceWhen in doubt, always ask. A professional optometrist will be more than happy to provide you with valuable information about choosing the right lenses and frames for astigmatism.
Alternative astigmatism treatment options
A person who wears glasses can attest to how inconvenient wearing them is, especially if you have a busy lifestyle. Here are some alternatives to wearing glasses:
- Contact lensesContact lenses are a great alternative to glasses and can even be more comfortable depending on your lifestyle. Contacts that are specifically made to correct astigmatism are readily available.
- LASIK surgeryLASIK (laser in-situ keratomileusis) surgery is a procedure that uses laser technology to reshape the cornea and correct astigmatism. It’s a safe, effective, and generally painless way to improve your vision and eliminate the need for glasses or contacts.
- Corneal relaxing incisionsThis type of eye surgery involves making small, shallow incisions in the cornea to correct astigmatism. It’s another viable option if you want to reduce or eliminate your need for corrective eyewear.
Remember that proper eye care is essential regardless of your chosen treatment. You should always consult your optometrist before making any big decisions about your eyesight.
Protect your eyes with the right glasses
Treating astigmatism with glasses effectively improves vision, protects your eyes, and reduces its associated symptoms, such as headaches and eye strain.
If you think you need glasses for astigmatism, be sure to consult your optometrist for a comprehensive eye exam so they can assess your condition accurately.
After getting your prescription, be sure to check out Mouqy’s wide collection of frames and find the right pair for you!