Do you find yourself asking a friend to read a menu or newspaper because you can’t read it? Or trying to stretch your arms far away to read your cell phone or book? You may be experiencing presbyopia. This is a common eye condition that occurs in people over the age of 40 causing close objects to appear blurry.
Presbyopia affects every person at some point, but fortunately it is easily correctable. What’s the culprit behind this problem? The crystalline lens. The crystalline lens sits behind the iris and helps refract (bend) the light entering our eyes to pass it through to the retina. As we age, the crystalline lens loses its elasticity and stiffens, making it difficult for our eyes to focus on close objects. While prevention of this anatomical change is impossible, there are a few ways to help correct the problem once it happens:
- Step one: See your optometrist! If you are experiencing difficulty focusing on close-up objects, they will be able to definitively diagnose presbyopia. If you have this issue before the age of 40, it is likely that you have hyperopia or astigmatism, not presbyopia.
- Wearing glasses which magnify objects at near, commonly called readers, are often the first step to correcting the issue.
- Multifocal contact lenses are also an option. These help you read both close and far objects at the same time, without the use of glasses.
- Another option to correct presbyopia is with a surgical procedure. Laser eye surgery has been known to help patients with presbyopia through monovision. This allows one eye to see distance and the other to see near.
If you are over 40 and think you may have presbyopic vision, contact our Victoria optometrist to explore solutions that will work for you. Don’t put up with blurry vision, headaches, and frustration – let us help you see clearly again with a comprehensive eye exam!