Hyperopia occurs when the eye is too short from front to back, that is, when the eyeball is too small. This causes the rays of light to focus behind the retina. Most of us are born hyperopic but most of us outgrow it as our eyeball grows in length. Before the mid 30's, the human lens inside our eye is very flexible and can focus (accommodate), thus allowing a hyperopic person to see just fine without glasses.
If the amount of hyperopia is too great, the constant focusing of the human lens can cause eye fatigue or eye strain. If this is problem, glasses can be prescribed to alleviate the strain. Certain eye conditions such as the eyes turning inward (accommodative esotropia) and in rare cases glaucoma can be associated with hyperopia.
By the late 30's to mid 40's, most people with hyperopia have not only difficulty seeing up close due to presbyopia, but since the human lens is so inflexible at that age, they also can no longer focus at distance. At this age bifocals are increasingly necessary. Other than glasses, laser refractive surgery, such as LASIK, can also correct small amounts of hyperopia.