Presbyopia is a common, age-related eye condition that due to the eye's gradual inability to focus at near.
As we get older, it is completely normal for our eyes to find it more difficult to focus on near things. Presbyopia is an aged-related eye condition where the lens loses it's flexibility and becomes less able to change shape. Because changing shape is how the lens focuses at near, this manifests as blurred vision for near tasks.
You may begin to notice symptoms of presbyopia as early as 40 years old. Symptoms include difficulty seeing detail and reading up close such as your phone, books or menus. Many people find that holding items farther away helps them see clearer, however this is only a short-term fix as your arms are only so long!
Presbyopia is a natural part of the ageing process, where the lens of the eye becomes less flexible and malleable compared to when it was younger.
The ageing of this lens results in your eyes being unable to focus on close up images causing the condition Presbyopia.
Some individuals only experience slight symptoms of presbyopia, and so a prescription is only needed for near tasks (within 1 meter). This means that for those with mild symptoms, a pair of prescription glasses for reading up close may be all that's needed.
Other individuals however may notice that their intermediate (1 to 3 meters) vision and/or their distance vision (more than 6 meters) is also affected. In these situations, different lens types such as a progressive lens or bifocal are more suited so that your eyewear can be tailored to a variety of tasks.
For all individuals, including those with mild symptoms, progressive lenses are the premium solution as they provide excellent vision at all distances, eliminating the frustrating on-off nature of reading glasses.
For many people, glasses are sometimes not suitable for their everyday lives. Contact lenses are a great alternative to eyewear, as they allow people to wear them for all types of activities such as sport and recreation.
From daily contact lenses to monthly, soft contact lenses or hard contact lenses, there are certainly a variety to choose from and your optometrist will recommend the best option for you and your vision needs.
As presbyopia is an age-related eye condition, like grey hair and wrinkles, it is unable to be prevented. However, the key to detecting eye conditions, such as presbyopia, early is ensuring you stay on top of your eye health with regular eye examinations. We recommend that a healthy pair of eyes has a regular check every 2 years to keep your vision at its best.
Our optometrists are able detect early signs of vision conditions, and are qualified to diagnose and treat a variety of eye health issues. Following your eye assessment, our Eyewear Specialists can discuss your lifestyle needs and together create a personalised management plan.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I have to wear glasses all the time if I have presbyopia? Not always. It depends on how whether your intermediate and/or distance vision is affected, and whether or not you find the on-off nature of reading glasses frustrating.
Does presbyopia mean I'm going blind? No. Having presbyopia does not mean that your eyes are unhealthy. Presbyopia is an age-related vision condition that causes the eyes to struggle to focus, and the assistance of glasses is needed. With glasses on, you will always be able to see well.
How quickly does presbyopia progress? Like most age-related changes, presbyopia will affect everyone differently. Symptoms can start as early as 40 years old, and can worsen until around 65 years old, where the condition then slows down or even stops. The degree at which presbyopia affects your vision, the rate at which it worsens, and the age it starts is different for everyone.
Will presbyopia get worse if I succumb to wearing glasses? No. Presbyopia, like wrinkles and grey hair, is a fact of the aging process of the eyes. How our bodies are affected by presbyopia is individual, and there is nothing you can do to make presbyopia better or worse. Whether you choose to wear glasses, or not, will not affect how much presbyopia will impact your vision.
How do you test for presbyopia? Presbyopia is diagnosed during an eye examination with your optometrist. At OCULA, our comprehensive eye examinations include a deep eye health evaluation as well as a refraction assessment which allows for vision conditions such as presbyopia to be detected, diagnosed and treated.
If you are having difficulties with your vision, don’t wait. You shouldn’t have to suffer. To book an appointment with one of our specialists optometrists book here.