Presbyopia is age-related long-sightedness, developed as a result of the lens losing its elasticity. It usually becomes noticeable after the age of 40 and reduces a person ‘s ability to focus on objects near to them, but will not affect the ability to see distant objects. Vision problems such as this are often termed refractive errors, and can be identified early during an eye examination. Presbyopia will worsen with age, however can be corrected with prescription glasses or contact lenses.
Presbyopia normally becomes apparent after the age of 40, and results in near objects become blurred, whilst distant objects remain clear. This is especially apparent when reading, writing or working at a computer. To compensate for the blurred image, eyes with try to manually reshape your lens resulting in a squint, which will tire your eyes out very quickly. This can lead to eye pain or a burning sensation, and can be a cause of recurrent headaches.
The lens is very flexible and required for the eye to focus on objects at varying distances. In youth, it enables most to see clearly near and far by either stretching or shortening to sharpen the image. As one ages however, the lens grows thicker and loses its flexibility, which means it can no longer change shape as easily. As a result, people who never previously required glasses start to notice vision changes, and may required prescription glasses or contact lens.
Presbyopia is normally corrected with reading glasses, which are only necessary to be worn when working, and are available in most pharmacies, opticians and supermarkets. Those who also have myopia often find that bifocal or varifocal glasses are a better solution once presbyopia develops. Multifocal contact lenses are also a solution, and will work much in the same way as glasses. However, since the lens’ elasticity will deteriorate with age, the prescription will need to be increased over time to maintain clear vision. There are also surgical treatments available to reduce the need for glasses for patients of any age. These are not usually available on the NHS, but include specialist laser eye surgery and multifocal lens implant techniques.
This article is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Doctify Limited has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but makes no warranty as to its accuracy. Consult a doctor or other health care professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions. In the event of an emergency, please call 999 for immediate assistance.