How does my vision work?

Your eye is made up of several components that work together as a visual system. The front of the eye is made of the cornea, iris, pupil and a natural lens which is contained in the lens capsule. The back of the eye is the retina, where images are focused.

As light enters your eye, your visual system gets to work focusing that light onto your retina. The light receptors on your retina turn that light into an image for your brain to “see.”

Normal eye focusing light


All of this happens continuously and instantly, but our eyes don’t always work perfectly. You may have astigmatism that you’ve managed for years with glasses or contact lenses, or you may have developed visual conditions over time, like presbyopia and cataracts.


  • Occurs when the cornea has an oval shape
  • Light coming into the eye is focused inconsistently
  • Objects appear stretched or distorted
  • Can occur simultaneously with nearsightedness or farsightedness


  • Occurs over time, as the eye’s natural lens becomes too stiff to focus
  • Near vision loss starts after 40 years of age
  • Print and other nearby objects become blurry


  • Occur when the eye’s normally clear natural lens becomes cloudy
  • A “cloudy lens” prevents light from reaching the back of the eye causing images to lose their clarity
  • Objects or text can appear waxy, blurry or dull

Myopia (Nearsightedness)

  • Ability to clearly see near objects, but distant objects are blurry
  • Occurs when the cornea is too rounded or steep, or the eyeball is too long
  • The eye’s refractive power is too strong

Hyperopia (Farsightedness)

  • Ability to clearly see distant objects, but nearby objects can be blurry
  • Occurs when the cornea is too flat or the eye is too short
  • The eye’s refractive power is too weak