What is it?
A condition where the focusing muscle can no longer bend to allow clear vision for reading or near tasks. Generally associated with maturity.
Who Does it Affect?
Everyone at some point in their life experiences a weakening of the focusing muscle. In general it will start to create symptoms for patients between 35 and 45 years of age. It is more problematic in those patients who read or review small print documents in their job, have poorer lighting, or need to see well at a very close distance.
How is it Treated?
There are many options to correct presbyopia and these are listed below. For many people with multiple tasks, more than one method of correction works best. Your doctor will work with you to determine the best functional correction methods.
- Progressive glasses. Best option for good vision at distance and near.
- Computer glasses. For near and computer tasks, allows a wide field of view.
- Progressive contact lenses. Technology has allowed great improvement in these lenses which may be available in soft or rigid materials and daily or overnight wear. Many people choose to have progressive contact lenses for part of full time.
- Contact Lens Monovision. For more than 20 years this method has produced good vision at distance and near without the need for reading glasses.
- Laser surgery. There are no Lasik or other laser surgery options recommended for presbyopia. Monovision can, however, be performed for those patients who have experienced it and do well with contact lenses.
- Reading glasses. Sometimes it is just easier to see at near, however these do not allow distance vision so many people are frustrated if they look up and see blur.
- Over-the-Counter Readers. Inexpensive, and variable in attractiveness. Often tried by many and frequently found in each room of the house! These are suitable temporary options for those people who have equal prescription needs in each eye, no astigmatism and are not overly concerned with "looking older." Need to be worn lower on the nose or they will cause blur at other distances like reading glasses.
- Combinations of the above. Because one type of shoe is not good for every occasion!