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Does Astigmatism Cause Double Vision?

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A point of view of a person with double vision looking at a door knob.

Astigmatism is an eye condition that affects many people around the world. It is a common visual impairment that can cause blurred vision, eye strain, and headaches. 

One of the most common questions people with astigmatism ask is whether or not it causes double vision. The answer is not straightforward, as it depends on the severity of the astigmatism and other underlying conditions. 

If you have astigmatism or any other eye condition, it is best to see your eye doctor for an eye exam to receive the proper treatment plan for you.

Understanding Astigmatism

Astigmatism is an eye condition where the cornea, which is the front part of the eye, is not round but shaped like an ellipse. 

Because of its irregular shape, the cornea cannot focus light evenly onto the retina. This results in distorted or blurred vision, making it difficult to see objects in focus. 

Astigmatism is often the result of genetics, injury, or surgery. It can also be caused by underlying conditions such as keratoconus or corneal scarring.

What Can Cause Astigmatism?

While most people are born with some degree of astigmatism, it can also develop later in life. Factors contributing to this can include eye trauma, certain types of eye surgery, or diseases that cause corneal distortion. 

In some cases, a significant increase in astigmatism can be indicative of a condition called keratoconus, a progressive disease that thins and reshapes the cornea.

It’s crucial to remember that if you’re experiencing issues with your vision, such as blurring or distortion, it’s advisable to consult with an eye care professional. They can provide a comprehensive evaluation and discuss appropriate treatment options if needed.

An eye doctor showing a cross-section model of an eye to explain the cause of astigmatism to her patient.

Understanding Double Vision 

When your eyes aren’t lining up right, it can lead to double vision. This happens because your brain is getting two different pictures from each eye. 

Several factors can cause this, like problems with your eye muscles, nerve damage, or even conditions that affect your brain. Sometimes, certain medications can also give you double vision. 

But don’t stress (that can exacerbate double vision, too!)—not all double vision means there’s a serious problem underneath it all.

What Can Cause Double Vision?

Double vision can be caused by a variety of factors. It might be something minor like astigmatism, a common eye condition that can make your vision blurry or distorted.

Sometimes, the cause could be more serious. For instance, a brain aneurysm or stroke could lead to double vision. Other potential causes include increased pressure from injury, bleeding, or infection, tumors, and migraine headaches.

Vertigo, a sensation that your surroundings are spinning, could also cause double vision. This is typically due to issues in your inner ear.

If you’re experiencing double vision when looking with just one eye, the cause might be ophthalmological, such as a cataract, a problem with the retina, or some other eye condition.

Other possible causes include strabismus, uncorrected refractive problems, retinal diseases, or certain muscular and neurological alterations.

Double vision could also be due to your eyes focusing too hard. If you’re experiencing double vision, it’s always best to seek the advice of a professional to determine the cause, considering there are many, and get the appropriate treatment.

Myths About Astigmatism

Myth: Astigmatism Always Causes Double Vision

One of the most common misconceptions about astigmatism is that it always causes double vision. This is not true. While astigmatism can cause blurry vision, eye strain, headaches, and difficulty reading, it does not necessarily mean that you will experience double vision. Most people with mild astigmatism will not experience double vision. 

Myth: Double Vision Is the Only Symptom of Astigmatism 

Another myth about astigmatism is that double vision is the only symptom associated with this condition. However, this is not always the case. Some people with astigmatism may experience other symptoms such as eye fatigue, difficulty focusing, or distorted vision. It all depends on the severity and type of astigmatism you have. 

Facts About Astigmatism

Fact: Certain Types of Astigmatism can Cause Double Vision 

While not all people with astigmatism experience double vision, it is possible in some cases. For instance, if you have a high degree of astigmatism or a particular type of astigmatism known as irregular astigmatism, you may see multiple images of a single object. 

This happens because irregular astigmatism is caused by an irregularly shaped cornea or lens that refracts light unevenly, resulting in double vision. 

Fact: Treatment Options Are Available to Correct Astigmatism-Related Double Vision 

If you have been diagnosed with astigmatism-related double vision, several treatment options are available to help correct this problem. 

Some options include wearing glasses or contact lenses with a particular prescription to compensate for the irregularities in your cornea or lens, undergoing laser eye surgery to reshape your cornea, or using special prisms to bend light and fuse the images. 

Get Help Seeing Clearly

Regular eye exams and maintaining good eye health can help prevent astigmatism and other visual impairments from affecting your daily life.

If you have astigmatism and experience double vision, it is essential to seek medical attention from your eye doctor at Total Vision Rancho Bernardo immediately. Book your appointment without delay.

Written by Total Vision

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