Ever wonder why people in their 40's and 50's usually wear reading glasses? As time passes, your eye's lens grows more and more inflexible, decreasing your ability to focus on handheld objects. We call this presbyopia. And it's universal.
People with untreated presbyopia may hold printed text at arm's length in order to focus properly. Additionally, performing other tasks at close range, like crafts or handwriting, can also cause eyestrain and discomfort in individuals who have developed presbyopia. In order to treat presbyopia, there are a few options available, which take your eyewear preferences into account.
Reading glasses are helpful but are mostly useful for contact lens wearers or for people who don't already wear glasses for issues with distance vision. These are readily available, but it's advised not to get them before you have had a comprehensive eye examination. Unfortunately, these kinds of reading glasses may be handy for quick periods of reading but they can eventually result in eyestrain when worn for a long time. A more beneficial alternative to drugstore reading glasses are custom made ones. These can also correct astigmatism, accommodate prescriptions that are different between the two eyes, and in addition to all this, the optic centers of every lens are customized to fit the wearer. The reading distance is another detail that can be customized to match your individual needs.
If you already wear glasses for distance vision, think about bifocal or multi-focal corrective lenses, or PALs (progressive addition lenses), which a lot of people respond really well to. Essentially, these are eyeglasses with more than one point of focus; the bottom section has the prescription for seeing text and tasks at close distances. If you already wear contacts, it's worthwhile to talk to your eye care professional about multifocal contact lenses, or a treatment approach known as monovision, where one eye wears a lens for distance vision and one eye wears a lens for close vision.
Due to the fact that your eyesight changes as time goes on, you should expect your prescription to increase periodically. Presbyopia can affect older individuals even after refractive surgery, so it is it's worthwhile to take the time to find out about all the options before making decisions about your vision care.
We recommend you speak to your eye care professional for an informed view on the matter. Presbyopia is an inevitability of getting older, but the choices you make about it is always up to you.