Types of Refractive Errors
Myopia or shortsightedness is the most common refractive error in Singapore. Myopic persons cannot see distant objects clearly but can see near objects clearly.
Hyperopia or long-sightedness is uncommon in Singapore. Often misunderstood and confused with presbyopia, hyperopic persons are unable to see near objects well but can see distant objects relatively clearer. Hyperopia can occur at any age.
Astigmatism is common. In this condition, the cornea is not shaped like a sphere, but is distorted and shaped more like an egg. It results in blurred vision for both near and distant objects. Astigmatism can co-exist together with myopia, hyperopia or by itself.
Presbyopia is an age-related optical problem. After the age of 40, our lens gets stiffer and the focusing muscle (ciliary muscle) of our eye weakens. This leads to a deterioration in our ability to read or see near objects clearly. The earliest sign of presbyopia is the need to hold reading material or our phone further and further away. Presbyopia occurs in everyone, regardless of whether you have perfect vision, myopia, hyperopia or astigmatism.