Common eye problems (non-sight threatening)

These are mostly conditions that cause unclear vision (blur), but will not harm the eye if not attended to immediately.

Shortsightedness (myopia)

Occurs when light is focused in front of the retina and causes distance vision to become blurred. Near vision, however, is usually clear.

Long-sightedness (hyperopia)

Occurs when the natural tendency is to focus light beyond the retina rather than on it, and the eye has to make a compensating effort to re-focus. With a younger person this may only be possible with effort and may, for example, cause headaches when reading. In an older person, as well as making reading very difficult, it may also cause distance vision to become blurred.


Occurs when the front of the eye is egg shaped instead of being regularly curved like a ball. In this case both distance and near vision may be distorted or blurred.

Presbyopia (ageing eye)

As we get older, the lens of the eye thickens and slowly loses its flexibility leading to a gradual decline in our ability to focus on objects that are close up. This loss of focusing ability is called PRESBYOPIA. Click here for an in-depth discussion.

Amblyopia (Lazy Eye)

Amblyopia (lazy eye) is poor vision in an eye that did not develop normally during childhood, for various reasons such as a squint, high unequal refractive error, and stimulus deprivation (caused by cataract, glaucoma, patching or any other obstacle that blocks the vision in the eye). It usually affects one eye but may also involve both eyes and is generally caused by lack of use of one eye, when brain ‘favours’ one eye over the other. Amblyopia is treatable to a degree by means of therapy and / or surgery.

The above conditions may present by themselves or in combination in either or both eyes.