What is presbyopia?
- Presbyopia is difficulty seeing clearly and focusing up close. You may have difficulty reading, using your phone, or sewing. This can be worsened by dim lighting and fatigue, and can cause eye strain and headaches.
- Presbyopia is a natural part of aging that occurs when the lenses in your eyes become thicker and less elastic. The muscles surrounding the lenses weaken, and are less able to control the light entering the back of the eye, causing blurred vision up close.
How can you reduce eye strain at home?
- Wear your eyeglasses or contact lenses as prescribed
- Provide yourself with good light for reading; a soft background light with a direct light on your book, phone, crossword, &c. works well
- Take frequent breaks when reading, watching TV, or working on a computer; blink often and close your eyes to rest when they feel tired
- Avoid glare on television and computer screens; place your electronics where lights do not reflect on the screen
- Wear sunglasses to block out harmful sunlight; buy sunglasses that block ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B (UVA and UVB) rays
- You may choose large-print books or adjust the font size on your computer for easier reading
How can presbyopia be corrected?
- Eyeglasses and contact lenses can help correct presbyopia by bending the light into the correct position on the retina before it enters your eye. If you currently wear glasses, you will need a new prescription. If you do not currently wear glasses or contact lenses, you may be able to use over the counter, nonprescription reading glasses.
- Fortunately, there are special lenses made to help correct presbyopia that can be implanted during cataract surgery. These lenses offer extended depth of focus benefits and can drastically reduce your need for glasses for far away and up close!
When should you call for help?
- Sudden decrease in vision
- Problems wearing contact lenses
- If you see flashes of light or new floaters, or if you see a “curtain” over your vision
- If you need help adjusting to reduced vision
- If you do not see as well as you think you should wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses