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The eye focuses by bending incoming light rays to meet at a single point. Ideally this single point lands directly on the fovea, the central point of the retina. If the light rays reach this perfect placement, you experience clear, sharp images.
However, if the focal point is behind the retina or in front of the retina, the image on the retina will not be fully formed and will be interpreted by your brain as blurred. This is very much like focusing a projector onto a blank movie screen. If the projection is too close or too far from the screen, the images are blurred. Set at the correct distance, you may enjoy the show!
When you have an eye examination at Harvard Eye Associates, your eye doctor will determine whether you are nearsighted, farsighted, astigmatic, and/or presbyopic by measuring where your eye focuses light. Depending on your refraction, your eye doctor will discuss different treatment options with you.
Nearsighted individuals typically have problems seeing well at a distance and are forced to wear glasses or contact lenses. The nearsighted eye is usually longer than a normal eye, and its cornea may also be steeper. Therefore, when light passes through the cornea and lens, it is focused in front of the retina. This will make distant images appear blurred. There are several refractive surgery solutions available to correct nearly all levels of nearsightedness.
Farsighted individuals typically develop problems reading up close before the age of 40. The farsighted eye is usually slightly shorter than a normal eye and may have a flatter cornea. Thus, the light of distant objects focuses behind the retina unless the natural lens can compensate fully. Near objects require even greater focusing power to be seen clearly and therefore, blur more easily. LASIK, Refractive Lens Exchange and Contact lenses are a few of the options available to correct farsightedness.
Asymmetric steepening of the cornea or natural lens causes light to be focused unevenly, which is the main optical problem in astigmatism. To individuals with uncorrected astigmatism, images may look blurry or shadowed. Astigmatism can accompany any form of refractive error and is very common. Astigmatism can be corrected with glasses, contact lenses, corneal relaxing incisions, laser vision correction, and special implant lenses.
Presbyopia is a condition that typically becomes noticeable for most people around age 45. In children and young adults, the lens inside the eye can easily focus on distant and near objects. With age, the lens loses its ability to focus adequately.
Although presbyopia is not completely understood, it is thought that the lens and its supporting structures lose the ability to make the lens longer during close vision effort. To compensate, affected individuals usually find that holding reading material further away makes the image clearer. Ultimately, aids such as reading glasses are typically needed by the mid-forties. Besides glasses, presbyopia can be dealt with in a number of ways. Options include: monovision and multifocal contact lenses, monovision laser vision correction, and new presbyopia correcting implant lenses.
As always, Harvard Eye is first and foremost concerned about what is best for each individual patient. Call us today for your personalized consultation!
Harvard Eye Associates
Laguna Hills Office
Map and Directions
24401 Calle de la Louisa
Laguna Hills, California 92653
Harvard Eye Associates
San Clemente Office
Map and Directions
665 Camino de los Mares
San Clemente, California 92673
The eye doctors of Harvard Eye Associates perform advanced technology diagnostic testing and treatment, as well as taking the time necessary to provide each patient with information needed to fully understand his or her condition and to achieve the best possible visual outcome.
If you or a family member or friend have not had a recent routine eye examination, have a specific eye condition that needs addressing, or are looking for an eye specialist, second opinion, or professional eye consultant please take a moment to Request an Appointment.
New techniques or improvements in a current technique are occasionally introduced to the medical world.
Harvard Eye Associates is a FDA clinical research study center for emerging technology. This great honor makes it possible for us to offer qualifying patients access to advancements in eye care not yet available to the general public.
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If you have questions about your eyes, Harvard Eye Associates is here with the information you need.
We've dedicated sections of our website expressly to list of Frequently Asked Questions and Answers, covering cataract surgery, glaucoma, retina, LASIK, macular degeneration, dry eyes and more, plus an online form where you may submit questions directly to an eye doctor.
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Internationally regarded as the go-to specialist in eye care, Harvard Eye offers a combined experience of over 100 years and over 100,000 surgical procedures. The doctors of Harvard Eye Associates have treated virtually every known eye condition there is, plus a few previously unknown.
Whether you or a loved one are having a first eye exam, a repeat eye exam, or are seeing a new eye doctor at Harvard Eye for the first time, there are a number of routine questions you can expect.
Your answers to these questions during eye exams are anything but routine for your eye doctor, so you may want to arrive prepared.
Read testimonials and watch videos of actual Harvard Eye Associates patients who have benefited from our professionalism, dedication, and commitment to high quality patient care.
Our offices provide patients with all eye care needs from routine eye exams to complex surgical procedures.
We are both proud and grateful that our patients have chosen to trust their vision with Harvard Eye!
Volunteer work is extremely important to Harvard Eye Associates. Twice yearly, we travel the world to teach and perform surgery to people who have no other resources, and have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to providing medical training and supplies to developing countries.