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Near or farsighted? Which are you?

Health • by Ryno Ellis • 01 October 2018
Have you ever heard your optometrist use the terms “nearsighted” and “farsighted” and wondered what they mean? Being nearsighted means that you can see things close to you like text in a book and being farsighted means the opposite, that you can see things further away like your TV screen.

Both these conditions are refractive conditions which means that the shape of the eye does not allow light to reflect onto the retina as it should. Let’s look at each condition separately and how to correct them:


Nearsightedness or myopia refers to a refractive defect when you are better able to see things closer to you.

This means that you are able to see the text of a book clearly, but when you look out of your window you’ll have trouble reading a sign. It is when the eye, which is generally round like a cricket ball, changes to a more oval shape like a rugby ball. This causes the light to fall in front of the retina, making objects further away seem more blurred.

A vision test at your local optometrist can help detect nearsightedness which can be corrected with prescription glasses, contact lenses and, in some cases, surgery.


Farsightedness or hyperopia is the exact opposite of nearsightedness. People suffering from it can see things in the distance like billboards or signs but are unable to see things closer like reading a newspaper.

This is when the eyeball becomes misshapen (shaped like a rugby ball) which forces light to shine through the eye and fall behind the retina. This causes close objects to become more fuzzy or blurry.

This defect can also easily be detected through a simple eye test with your optometrist. Farsightedness can be corrected by obtaining prescription glasses, contact lenses and even surgery.

Suffer from blurry vision?

If you suffer from blurry vision then it’s important to talk to your optometrist today.

GetSavvi Health offers an optometry top-up option which covers an eye test, eyeglass frame and single and bifocal lenses.

To learn more about this benefit, click this link and fill in the form and a GetSavvi Health consultant will be in contact soon.


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