Need some Tips regarding Astigmatism reduction!

Hey There,

this is my first time posting on this forum here is a quick summary of my situation :

I’m a programmer which means screens are a big part of my life, recently I did an eye exam, and apparently my astigmatism is skyrocketing.

here is my glasses prescription from two years ago : [ both eyes: S 0, CYL -0.25]
here is my glasses prescription now : [ both eyes: S 0, CYL -1.50]

Apparently, my spherical vision is on point but the cylinders need a bit of work and the new glasses I got were too strong that I didn’t wear them yet because I’m scared they going to make my problem worse, and I’ve been doing tons of research about reducing vision problems and I watched tons of vids online about autofocus and reducing lenses, and then I came across this form.

I’m still using my old glasses prescription CYL -0.25, and I can see the screen clearly with a bit of blur. I also tried to make changes like taking breaks and going outside more often. but still, I feel like my vision is getting worse. And I’m worried that I’m missing something or if i should treat prescriptions differently.

are there any recommendations or tips for what could be a good next step for me?

Best.

I managed to “catch” some astigmatism during 2020 lockdown by working on my laptop and always keeping it on the right arm rest of my chair, the eye that looks across the midline is worse (my left eye).

There are theories of functional astigmatism that suggest that looking at things off to the side for long periods of time exacerbate astigmatism. Orchestra musicians have to sit in a constrained posture and look at their sheet music at an angle, and they generally develop astigmatism in predictable ways.

Do you have two monitors, one on each side? If you’ve set up your desk so that your chair faces forward and your screens are off to the side, that’s probably the first thing you should try to fix. You want to make sure your’re looking straight at the thing you are trying to view.

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Hey there nycmao,

thanks for your reply, my setup is one screen in the center, slightly below my eyes level so I don’t really tilt my head that much. the axis of my astigmatism is 8 left eye, 164 right eye. (forgot to type that in the post). The problem is I don’t think my astigmatism is genetic-based and I wanted to ask because I think correcting it now will be easier than later. are there any other methods besides letting for posture? and did your astigmatism got better somehow?

Hi there. I have similar condition as @Allaith regarding the big part of life behind the screens and astigmatism axis. I have CYL -2.0 on both eyes which is checked by a corneal topography.

I think eye movements on the screen are important because I feel some relieving juice in my eyes when I breathe into my outer corneea. I have a glossy laptop screen and a matte external monitor. I think they both have the same problem: the PWM flicker frequency so low. I overclocked my laptop screen frequency to a decent one and it is a noticeable improvement.

Wish I get a flicker-free screen to keep experimenting on. Meanwhile I have a smartphone screen with this technology and I can confirm my observations.

A good test is to play a video with few colors as if they are comics and try around this.

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Mine is getting better, but varies a lot from day to day. This morning right after I woke up my right eye is bang-on perfect, 20/10, no noticeable astigmatism, and my left eye was terrible and I was seeing noticeable defects in the letters on the eye chart on the 20/20 line and 20/40 line (could read them but they looked like a Captcha image).

When I had my eyes checked they took hi-resolution pictures of the macula, retina, lenses, cornea, etc and all of that internal eye-hardware looks very good, no cataracts or anything like that. Sometimes astigmatism can be caused by cataracts, so I’d make sure you were checked by someone who can rule out any actual medical condition going on in your eye (cataracts, glaucoma, etc.) Then assuming there isn’t an obvious source of the astigmatism like cataracts…

There are lots of things you could try. The first thing is probably reducing eye-strain and improving habits or “eye hygiene”: increasing outdoor time as much as possible, taking regular breaks from screen time, pursuing Active Focus on distant objects, doing all the same things that help with myopia.

I would make sure you’re not wearing astigmatism correction (minus CYL) when it’s not required and that when you do wear it (because it does something useful for you) that you’re wearing the minimum amount of correction that gets the job done.

So, for example, if you’re wearing glasses with astigmatism correction when looking at the computer screen or you’re indoors where the astigmatism isn’t causing you problems, stop doing that. For myopia, it appears that excessive minus use sends stimulus to the eye to cause it to keep elongating, there may be similar forces at work with astigmatism where having minus CYL in front of the eye is causing it to grow increasingly myopic (lengthen) along the axis that’s getting corrected by the lenses. So in the same way that putting on distance glasses for close-up work can cause lens-induced myopia, you don’t want to be giving your eyes stimulus to lengthen or grow increasingly misshapen by putting minus CYL in front of them for tasks like seeing your desk where the lenses provide no conceivable benefit.

Driving at night is a task where the minus CYL correction might be useful, so I’d figure out how much CYL you need to get the job done and then wear that minimal correction only when it’s providing an actual benefit to you (such as driving at night where it might reduce glare from headlights and streetlights.)

You don’t want to get into the vicious circle of having minus correction (mostly useful for distance), wearing the minus correction all-day for near work and having your eyes adapt to that, and then requiring ever-increasing minus correction every year when you re-test. It’s sort of like drinking alcohol every morning to make hangover symptoms go away.

When there’s only cyl no sph, it’s a good idea to investigate your habits and your surroundings.
As @madalin001 says flickers from monitor or lights can cause distortion in the vision. Sometimes you don’t even realise the flicker. And as @nycmao says often there is a body or head position that contributes to developing vision issues only at a certain angle, i.e. only in cyl. That can be a sitting position or a habit of tilting head, or with some people they realised they often looked under or over their glasses, etc. Or it can come from stronger lights arriving to your working area from one certain direction, like roof top window or living in a basement apartment with windows at the top of the wall, or using a desk lamp with strong lights from right or left for the desk but otherwise sitting in a dark room, etc.
Just a couple of ideas what types of things to look for. If you have a chance to change things around your working place, investigate and experiment.

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sorry for my late reply,
and thank you very much for the information, I realized that in my workspace there is a window on my left side and a lot of sunlight goes through it while there is no light coming from the right side, it could be the reason. one question however is :
if I ended the causality of the problem will that reverse the effect of astigmatism or is it too late for that?

thanks again.

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I think it probably will reverse it. Just like plants in your office will lean toward the light, if you turned them around they’d start leaning the other way. Eyes were designed or evolved for creatures that move around. Your eyes have just adapted to the unusual situation of having the sunlight always on the left. They’re not broken or damaged, just “out of tune”. Or more accurately, so finely adapted to your office environment that they’ve become maladjusted to the external world.

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Well, usually there’s no 1 magic pill. But if this was the biggest contributor, it will definitely bring changes.
I had a favourite spot in a previous flat with a roof top window. The flat was very well lit naturally but on sunny days the rooftop window added thousands of extra LUXs from above. After a while I noticed that there’s a huge difference in acuity on a very sunny day vs any other situations (not when at my desk, but in distance vision in general). Once I had significantly stronger lights from above, I could see much better. I even tested it by holding a strong spot lamp above my head when reading Snellen indoors in the evening at artificial lights. The acuity improved not by adding lights to the Snellen at the distance but by adding lights to my eyes.
I moved and stopped sunbathing under the rooftop window while working and now strong natural or artificial lights from above make a lot less difference to acuity. And I keep changing my and the desk lamp’s position to prevent getting stuck for astigmatism again…

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