When you reach middle age, you may notice that your eyesight begins to change as you have trouble focusing on objects close to your face, a condition called presbyopia. It does not matter if you have had 20/20 vision your entire life; you could develop presbyopia when you reach the mid-point of your life.
Many people compensate for this change in eyesight by purchasing cheap reading glasses from the drugstore to help them see up close. However, in order to treat presbyopia successfully, you need to understand its causes and reputable ways to correct the condition.
Causes and Signs of Presbyopia
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent presbyopia. It is a natural part of the aging process. Your eye's natural lenses lose flexibility, hindering your ability to focus properly on nearby objects. It is sometimes confused with farsightedness but it is a completely different medical condition.
You know you have presbyopia when you start holding out books and other objects at arm's length to see them better and when your vision seems blurry when objects are at a normal distance. You may be unable to read any small print on medicine bottles, food containers and signs.
Other symptoms include:
- Headaches when perusing reading materials
- Problems focusing when sewing, crocheting and performing embroidery
- Frequent eye fatigue
If you begin to experience any of these symptoms, make an appointment with an optometrist as soon as possible. The eye doctor will provide you with a comprehensive dilated optical exam and can also check you for symptoms of other age-related eye problems.
Get the Right Reading Glasses
While you can buy reading glasses from the drug store and even dollar stores, the cheap devices you purchase will not provide long term correction for presbyopia. The plastic lenses of cheap reading glasses succumb easily to scratches and smudges and do not provide adequate UV protection.
If you like the look of stylish glasses and want reading glasses specifically designed for your eyes, get a prescription from your optometrist.
Custom reading glasses are not only better quality than off-the-rack eyewear, they can also help to correct mild forms of astigmatism. In addition, if you have a different prescription for each eye, your customized reading glasses will have the correct lenses to accommodate the variance.
Opt for No-line Bifocals
If you already wear prescription glasses for an existing eye condition and get eye exams each year, you probably will not be surprised when your eye doctor tells you it is time for bifocals. However, don't despair if you think that means you have to wear glasses with a telltale line to let others know you have bifocals.
Advances in eyewear include the development of no-line bifocals called progressive lenses. You can even wear progressive lenses if you have been told you need to wear trifocals, glasses made with three lens segments for those who have advanced presbyopia.
Progressive lenses provide a more natural correction of your eye problems. You will not have to avert your gaze downward to read text or see objects jump as you move your eyes above and below the bifocal line.
Wear Bifocal and Multifocal Contacts
Before multifocal contact lenses reached the market, if you suffered from presbyopia, you would still need to wear reading glasses even while wearing contacts. However, with the introduction of bifocal and multifocal contacts on the market, you now only have to deal with one type of corrective eye device. For those who prefer contacts lenses over glasses, this is a godsend.
With multifocal contacts, you can correct presbyopia along with other problems. So if you also have astigmatism, your eye doctor will prescribe multifocals.
Like regular contacts, you can purchase different types of bifocal and multifocal lenses such as soft and gas permeable for daily and extended wear.
For more information, contact a clinic such as All About Eyes.