Presbyopia is the slow progression of the stiffening of the lens of the eye as you age. By age 40, more than 60% of people have some degree of presbyopia, and that percentage rises with age. Women are more likely than men to develop presbyopia, and women are also more likely to develop it at a younger age.
At Harlem VistaSite Eye Care in New York City, Dr. Brittni Rodriguez, OD, can help you manage your condition and see well again with eyeglasses or contacts.
When light rays enter the eye, the lens behind the iris bends and focuses the rays. The lens is flexible, and it changes shape so that your eye can focus on objects at different distances. However, with age, the lens can stiffen and lose the ability to change shape. When this happens, you’ll likely find it increasingly difficult to see things up close.
If you have presbyopia, by age 65, nearly all of your lens’ flexibility will be lost, and you’ll have extreme difficulty viewing anything at close range.
Symptoms of presbyopia
There are many symptoms connected to presbyopia, but most have to do with difficulty seeing and eye stress. Common symptoms include:
- Trouble seeing things up close
- Problems reading, especially fine type
- Having to hold things at arm's length and squint at them
- Inability to see in dim light
Dealing with presbyopia
Dr. Rodriguez can test your vision and determine the extent of your focusing problem. From there, she can make a diagnosis and help you understand what steps you need to take to correct your vision.
Presbyopia cannot typically be reversed ― although there may be hope in the future thanks to groundbreaking progress in the field of corneal implants ― and it usually only worsens with age. However, your presbyopia-related vision changes should be at their maximum by age 65 and stay the same going forward.
Presbyopia can be treated with corrective lenses in the form of eyeglasses or contacts. Among your options, you may get bifocals or trifocals to adjust your vision for different distances. You may also get monovision lenses, which allow one eye to see close up and the other to see far away. Furthermore, you may get reading glasses. Dr. Rodriguez can discuss the options that will work best for you after she examines your eyes.
If you’re holding things at arm’s length or squinting when you look at things close up, it may be time for a vision check. To see if you have presbyopia and to find out your treatment options, book an appointment online or over the phone with Harlem VistaSite Eye Care today.