Skip to main content

Home » What's New » Presbyopia and Getting Older

Presbyopia and Getting Older

Contact your Costa Mesa, CA Eye Doctor to Learn More About Treatment Options

Many adults eventually begin to notice signs of presbyopia or a diminished ability to see things at a close range, as they age. As people around the world are reaching older ages a larger number of people develop the condition, which currently cannot be avoided.

Your eye's lenses bend when focusing on objects at varying distances. Some theories are that with age, that elasticity gets diminished because the lenses get thicker. This phenomenon is known as presbyopia and is often first noticed by an increased difficulty reading or seeing things right in front of you. This often can start to happen any time after the age of 40. Sufferers often cope with near vision impairment by holding a newspaper far away or standing away from the object they want to focus on. Transitions from focusing on far away things to nearer ones can often be tiring for those with presbyopia. The tension can worsen the situation resulting in headaches, eye strain or fatigue.

Most of the time bifocals or progressive addition lenses (PALs) are used to correct presbyopia. A bifocal lens has two prescriptions for vision, one is for distance vision and the other part of the lens is for focusing on things nearby. PALs work similarly to bifocals, however they provide a more gradual transition between the separate prescriptions. Wearers will more easily shift their focus, as they would if they had normal vision. A third option is reading glasses which, unlike bifocals or PALs which are worn continually, are used only when needed.

Presbyopes can also use multifocal contact lenses or monovision lens correction (when one eye is prescribed a distance vision and the other near vision) to improve the vision impairment. It may take a while to decide upon the best method and type of contact lenses due to the fact that different lenses can cause discomfort or blurriness.

In addition, there are surgical options that could be considered that you may want to discuss with your eye doctor. Many patients are most successful combining options for presbyopia. Additionally, because your eyesight will likely worsen with age, it is likely that you will need to continually adjust the strength of your correction. The good news is, there continues to be a significant amount of research being done to identify additional and perhaps more permanent treatments for presbyopia.

If you are starting to notice signs of presbyopia, book a check up with your Costa Mesa, CA eye doctor. Improved eyesight can be yours!