Astigmatism is very common and generally nothing to worry about. It describes when the eye is rugby ball shaped rather than round. The majority of people have a small degree of astigmatism which causes no problems. If you wear glasses, you can be long or short sighted and also have astigmatism. The astigmatism will be taken into account in your spectacle prescription. A higher degree of astigmatism can cause blurred vision and you will need to wear glasses to correct it. It can occur in one or both eyes.
There are two types of astigmatism.
Astigmatism is detected during a routine eye test. Optometrists recommend that most people should get their eyes tested every two years.
Astigmatism can cause:
If you have any of these symptom make an appointment to see your optician.
Astigmatism often occurs early in life, but it may develop later in life.
Regular astigmatism is easily corrected with glasses or contact lenses for most people. If you have a moderate to high level of astigmatism toric contact lenses will help.
In the past if you had a high degree of astigmatism this may have limited the types of contact lenses available to you, but now soft toric lenses are available in a wider range of options. Rigid lenses in gas permeable materials are another good solution, either as small corneal lenses or mini scleral lenses which can help people with severe or irregular astigmatism. Ask your contact lens optician if you would like to try toric lenses.