As we age, the lens of the eye loses flexibility. When that happens, the muscle surrounding the lens is unable to expand or contract making it difficult to bring close objects into focus. Most people begin to notice presbyopia around age 40 when they can no longer focus on reading material up close, causing them to hold the material further away to bring it into focus.
Although most common vision problems can be managed using corrective lenses, such as glasses or contacts, it can be inconvenient to do so. People who suffer from presbyopia, commonly known as over-40 vision, complain glasses are never where they need them.
Symptoms of Presbyopia
- Blurry vision beginning at age 40
- Difficulty adjusting focus when switching from near to distance vision
- Eyes that tire easily
- Headaches when doing close-up work
Are you at Risk?
Presbyopia is a direct result of aging. As we get older, the lenses in the eyes lose some of their elasticity, robbing them of their ability to change focus for different distances. Presbyopia may seem to occur suddenly, but the loss of flexibility actually occurs gradually over the years. Long before you realize that seeing up close is more difficult, the lenses in the eyes have begun to lose their ability to flatten and thicken.
All comprehensive examinations at KE Eye Centers of Texas include presbyopia testing. The doctors at KE Eye Centers of Texas conduct refractive evaluations, which determine whether your eyes focus light rays exactly on the retina up close and at distance, and a visual acuity test will determine your ability to see sharply and clearly at all distances. During your examination the Kleiman | Evangelista team will also check your eyes’ coordination, muscle control and ability to change focus, all of which are important factors in how your eyes see.
Many people use reading glasses and contact lenses as temporary treatments for presbyopia. There are a number of vision correction procedures, however, that can surgically reduce or eliminate the effects of presbyopia, including monovision, which allows them to see clearly at distance with one eye and close-up with the other. Presbyopia can be present in combination with other types of refractive errors, such as myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness) and astigmatism.