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Vision Problems

A concise guide to some of the most common vision problems treated at Alva Vision Clinic

There are many different types of vision problems that could be affecting your eyesight and visual function. Some of these problems can be easily corrected with glasses or contact lenses, while others require a vision therapy program.  The doctors at Alva Vision Clinic are skilled in diagnosing and correcting vision problems.


Astigmatism is an uneven or irregular curvature of the cornea or lens, which results in blurred or distorted vision. Other symptoms of astigmatism include the need to squint, eye strain from squinting, headaches and eye fatigue.

In reality, most people have some degree of astigmatism, which is usually present at birth and is believed to be hereditary. In minor cases, treatment may not be required but is certainly beneficial. Moderate to severe astigmatism can be treated with corrective eyewear or LASIK surgery. For more information on astigmatism, click here.

Hyperopia (Farsightedness)

Farsightedness, medically known as hyperopia, refers to vision that is good at a distance but not at close range. Farsightedness occurs when the eyeball is shorter than normal, as measured from front to back, or when the cornea has too little curvature. This reduces the distance between the cornea and retina, causing light to converge behind the retina, rather than on it.

If you are mildly farsighted, your eye care provider may not recommend corrective treatment at all. However, if you are moderately or severely hyperopic, you may have several treatment options available, including eyeglasses, contacts, LASIK and photorefractive keratectomy (PRK). Your eye care provider at Alva Vision Clinic will help you determine the best treatment option for you. For more information on hyperopia, click here.

Myopia (Nearsightedness)

Nearsightedness, medically known as myopia, refers to vision that is good at close range but not at a distance. It generally occurs because the eyeball is too “long” as measured from front to back.

Nearsightedness is diagnosed during routine eye exams and possible treatments include eyeglasses, contacts, acrylic corneal implants, LASIK, radial keratotomy (RK) and photorefractive keratotomy (PRK). Your eye care provider will suggest the best treatment option for you. For more information on myopia, click here.

Presbyopia (Aging Eyes)

Aging eyes, medically known as presbyopia, is a condition in which the lens of the eye gradually loses its flexibility, making it harder to focus clearly on close objects such as printed words. Distance vision, on the other hand, is usually not affected.

Unfortunately, presbyopia is an inevitable part of aging and cannot be prevented by diet, lifestyle or visual habits. However, it is treatable with several types of corrective lenses, including progressives, bifocals and trifocals, single-vision reading glasses, multifocal contact lenses and monovision therapy. For more information on presbyopia, click here.


Strabismus is also known as an ‘eye turn’ or ‘crossed eyes’ and occurs when the two eyes do not line up in the same direction. One eye may turn inward, outward, upward, or downward.  It is estimated that roughly 4% of children have strabismus. If you notice that your child ever has an eye turn- even if only when sick, stressed, or tired -let your eye doctor know!

Treatment options for strabismus include glasses, contact lenses,  vision therapy, and, in extreme cases, surgery. For more information on strabismus, click here.


Amblyopia is decreased vision in one eye compared to the other that can be caused by strabismus, refractive error, or physical obstruction of the eye.  Amblyopia is more commonly known as a ‘lazy eye’.  Symptoms of amblyopia include favoring one eye and decreased depth perception, but many times there are not noticeable symptoms.

Treatment options for amblyopia include glasses, contact lenses, patching of the better eye, and vision therapy. For more information on amblyopia, click here.

Convergence Insufficiency

“Convergence” is the inward movement and focusing of both eyes on a near object- such as a book or tablet.  Convergence insufficiency, or CI, is the condition when the eyes do not move inward and focus properly.  Common symptoms of CI include eye discomfort after reading or computer work, blurred vision, headaches, and eye strain.

Vision therapy is the best treatment option for patients with CI. For more information on CI, click here.

Accommodative Dysfunction

Accommodation is also known as focusing.  The eyes have an automatic focusing system that allows us to clearly see objects that are up close and objects that are far away.  As we age we lose the ability to focus clearly on objects that are up close–that’s known as presbyopia.  But when children and young adults have difficulty focusing on close objects or difficulty focusing when looking close, then far away (such as looking at a book and then at the smart board for children in school), that’s known as accommodative dysfunction. Some symptoms include blurry vision, headaches, eye strain, difficulty shifting focus from one distance to another, and avoiding near work.

Treatments options for accommodative dysfunction include plus lenses for near work and vision therapy.

Oculomotor Dysfunction

Oculomotor dysfunction (OMD) is an eye movement problem. In these instances the eye movements are not smooth and accurate and can lead to difficulties with reading. Children who have OMD have a hard time keeping their place while they read and they may use a finger or pencil to help guide their eyes. Other symptoms include omitting words while reading, skipping or rereading lines, or difficulty copying.

Vision therapy is the best treatment option for children with OMD.

Your eye care provider at Alva Vision Clinic will work with you to diagnose your vision problem and suggest the best treatment option for your eyes at our optometric office in Alva. For more information, schedule an appointment with Troy Smith O.D. and we’ll be in touch with you shortly.