How Can Astigmatism Be Corrected

What is Astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a common and generally treatable imperfection in the curvature of the eye that causes blurred distance and near vision.

It occurs when either the front surface of the eye (cornea) or the lens inside the eye has mismatched curves. Instead of having one curve like a round ball, the surface is egg-shaped. This causes blurred vision at all distances. It is often present at birth and may occur in combination with near-sightedness or farsightedness.

There are two main types of astigmatism: myopic astigmatism and hyperopic astigmatism. Myopic astigmatism occurs when the cornea is too curved, which causes light rays to focus in front of the retina instead of on it. This results in blurred distance vision. Hyperopic astigmatism occurs when the cornea is not curved enough, which causes light rays to focus behind the retina. This results in blurred near vision.

How Is Astigmatism Diagnosed?

Astigmatism can occur in both eyes, but it is often more pronounced in one eye than the other. Astigmatism can be diagnosed during a comprehensive eye exam. During this exam, your doctor will ask you to look at an eye chart and read the letters aloud. He or she will also measure the curvature of your cornea and test your visual acuity (sharpness). The doctor will use a lighted instrument called a retinoscope to examine the eye and determine if there is any refractive error.

How Can Astigmatism Be Corrected?

Astigmatism can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, or surgery. Glasses or contact lenses correct astigmatism by bending the light that enters the eye so that it focuses evenly on the retina. Surgery corrects astigmatism by changing the shape of the cornea. Astigmatic keratotomy (AK) is a type of surgery that involves making incisions in the cornea to change its shape. This type of surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis and does not require a hospital stay. Astigmatic keratotomy can be used to correct myopic, hyperopic, or mixed astigmatism. Laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses (LASIK) is a type of surgery that involves using a laser to reshape the cornea. This type of surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis and does not require a hospital stay. LASIK can be used to correct myopic, hyperopic, or mixed astigmatism.

Astigmatism Treatment Options You Should Know

At present, there are a few different treatment options available for astigmatism. The most common is eyeglasses or contact lenses, which can be prescribed by either an optometrist or an ophthalmologist. For those who want to pursue a surgical correction, LASIK and other procedures can only be performed by an ophthalmologist. While these treatments are all effective in correcting astigmatism, the best option for each individual will depend on their specific situation and needs.

The following are the treatment options for Astigmatism –

Eyeglasses

The most common form of treatment for astigmatism is eyeglasses. Ophthalmologists report that using these in combination with an eye patch can often lead to 20/20 vision, but if the amount present on your retina is high then other treatment options may need exploration.

Contact lenses

Toric lenses are a special type of soft contact lens that corrects astigmatism. Orthokeratology uses them to treat certain vision conditions such as near-sightedness or presbyopia. During Orthokeratology, you may wear rigid contact lenses during the night while sleeping until the curvature of your eye evens out. Then you wear the lenses less frequently to maintain the new shape. If you discontinue this treatment, your eyes may return to their former refractive error and shape.

LASIK

Lasik eye surgery is a procedure designed to improve your vision and reduce the need for eyeglasses or contact lenses. The laser-assisted in situ keratomileuses (LASIK) uses an incision made with much-targeted accuracy, allowing it to fix astigmatism by reshaping parts of one’s cornea through carefully planned cuts that correct refractive errors; this type of surgery has been proven effective whether you’re near-sighted or farsighted.

8 Best Eye Exercises to Treat Astigmatism

Eye exercises are known to treat astigmatic vision. Like any other muscle in the body, you must keep your eye muscles active. Merely staring straight at the computer screen or the road ahead while driving doesn’t help in keeping the eye much active. Therefore, additional eye exercises are a must.

  • Rectus Muscle Relaxation –
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Place your thumb over your nose at a 90-degree angle.
    • Move it clockwise to the 12 o’clock position. Keep it there for 2-3 seconds and then bring it back. Make sure your eyes follow your thumb.
    • Now move the thumb to the 1 o’clock position, keep it there for 2-3 seconds and move it back to the original position (90-degree angle).
    • Repeat this for all clock positions.
    • Don’t forget to breathe properly during this exercise.
  • Eye Massage –
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Close your eyes and then place two fingers on each of your eyelids..
    • By applying gentle pressure, slowly move your fingers in a circular motion from top to bottom and from right to left..
    • Move your fingers clockwise as well as anti-clockwise..
    • Repeat it 10–15 times, 2 to 4 times a day..
  • Reading –
    • Pull out a book.
    • Place an object next to it. After reading a paragraph from the book, focus on the object.
    • Continue doing this until your eyes start to feel tired.
  • Vision Breaks
    • Take a break from writing, reading, or staring at the computer.
    • Focus on other objects in the distance for at least 20 seconds
    • Repeat this exercise as many times as possible in a day.
  • Head Tilting-
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Look in the mirror to find out if you tilt your head to one side.
    • Spend time every day consciously trying to tilt your head in the opposite direction.
  • Eye Yoga
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Keep your posture straight. Stand, sit in the chair, or on the floor.
    • Close your eyes, and breathe while concentrating on your eyes.
    • Slowly start moving your eyeballs from side to side.
    • Do this exercise several times throughout the day.
  • Blinking
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Set a 2-minute timer.
    • Blink every 3-4 seconds.
    • Do this exercise at least 4 times a day.
  • Figure 8
      The exercise should be done in the following steps:

    • Look at a distance of 10 feet from your eyes.
    • Imagine the number 8.
    • Move your eyes along the figure for 2 minutes.
    • Do the same in reverse for 2 minutes.
  • Benefits Of Eye Exercises For Astigmatism

    Astigmatism could be predominant at birth or could be a result of trauma, congenital conditions, or a result of eye surgery. The vision impairment can be very bothersome as it makes a simple task like reading a book complicated. However, there are natural ways to treat astigmatism and one of them is eye exercises.

    Below are some benefits of eye exercises:

    • They help in reducing stress.
    • They strengthen the eyes
    • They help relax the eye muscles.
    • They improve vision over time

    A few benefits from specific exercises include –

    • Rectus muscle relaxation exercise relaxes the rectus muscles, which reduces the stress on the cornea and also strengthens the muscles around the eyes
    • An eye massage helps restores the shape of the cornea.
    • Reading is a particular way with the help of an object helps release the strain and pressure
    • Head tilting helps the extraocular muscles to regulate the force they exert on the eyeball.
    • Eye Yoga helps in strengthening eye muscles, sharpening focus, and improving vision.
    • Blinking benefits the eye by keeping it moist allowing you to focus better. It also decreases eye strain keeping them refreshed.
    • Figure 8 helps the eye to regain strength and become flexible.

    Astigmatism: Related FAQs

    Although astigmatism is a common and easy condition to deal with, a few doubts always come up. Here are a few frequently asked questions to help the patient understand the course of action better.

    Q1. Can astigmatism be cured?

    Yes, astigmatism, with proper treatment depending upon the type you have can be treated and cured.

    Q2. Can eye surgery cause astigmatism?

    During cataract surgery, astigmatism is induced to help ease the corneal steepening post-surgery.

    Q3. Can LASIK Eye Surgery Fix Astigmatism?

    Yes, LASIK eye surgery can help fix vision impairment including astigmatism.

    Q4. Can Astigmatism Be Corrected Naturally?

    Astigmatism can be treated naturally with eye yoga and exercises. It usually takes a longer time to correct the impairment.

    Q5. Can Astigmatism Be Fully Corrected?

    Yes, it can be fully corrected with eyeglasses or lenses or surgery if required.

    Q6. What Is The Best Way To Correct Astigmatism?

    The best treatment for Astigmatism depends on the patient. But presently, surgery or contact lenses are considered the best way to correct the impairment.

    Summary

    Astigmatism is refractive vision impairment and is easily treatable and curable. Talk to your ophthalmologist about the type of Astigmatism and the treatment option that is best for you because glasses and/or contacts might not be ideal options for everyone, and surgery is usually the last resort. Astigmatism natural cure sounds almost impossible but there are several things you can do to help prevent it from getting worse.

    Frequent eye check-ups to catch and correct vision problems early. A healthy diet and exercise can help maintain proper blood flow, nutrients, and repairs to your eye tissues and keep your eyes working properly. However, if you are looking for a long-term solution for your astigmatism, laser surgery is the option.

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