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As we age, it’s no surprise that our bodies go through some changes. We color greying hair and use makeup to try to hide those pesky wrinkles, but what about when it comes to correcting changing vision that naturally blurs with age? If you haven’t been to the eye doctor in a while, you might not realize that you have several options when it comes to correcting your vision with eyeglass lenses. You might find lenses that better suit your lifestyle than the reading glasses at your local drugstore or the bifocals your grandmother used to wear.But first, how do you know if you need glasses to help you read and see up-close? If you fit any of the categories below, then you’ll want to read on.
• You are around the age of 40 or older, which is about the time an eye condition called presbyopia affects most people. Presbyopiais a naturally occurring condition of the eyes that is part of the aging process. It is the result of the gradual thickening and loss of flexibility of the lens inside your eye—with less elasticity, the eye has a harder time focusing up close.
• Picture yourself in a restaurant – how are you holding the menu? If you tend to hold menus, books, newspapers, etc. at arm’s length to be able to read them, then you probably are experiencing the effects of presbyopia.
• Your eyes are tired after reading or looking at a computer, and your frequent headaches seem to be related to eye strain. This can be a result of deteriorating vision.
If you have one of these symptoms, it’s time to consider corrective vision. If you already wear glasses or contacts and have these issues, talk to your eye doctor, as you may need an updated eye exam and prescription.
Benefits of Progressive Lenses
For years, presbyopia was often treated with bifocals, which provide distance viewing on the top of the lens and magnification for near vision on the bottom. But as lens technology has advanced, patients have more options when it comes to corrective vision. Progressive lenses not only look more modern – with the removal of the line that is apparent in bifocals – but they also take into account intermediate viewing, which has become increasingly important as we spend more and more time in front of computers. In fact, wearing bifocals may put you at a greater risk for computer vision syndrome as bifocal wearers must sit closer to the computer screen and tilt their heads back to see through the bottom part of the lens – leading to eye and muscle strain and neck pain.
Progressive lenses offer a seamless transition between all viewing distances – near, far, and intermediate – and, with the removal of the bifocal line, help eliminate the drastic jump in focus when moving your eyes up and down. When wearing progressive lenses, you can look up to see clearly across the room, ahead to view your computer in the intermediate zone, and down to read comfortably through the near zone of the lens.
If your eye doctor prescribes progressive lenses, you’ll be properly fitted for your new progressive lenses at your doctor’s office. The optician will take measurements of your eyes and eyeglass frames so the various lens powers in progressive lenses are in the right location. Once your eye doctor notifies you that your new glasses are ready, it’s important for you to go into your doctor’s office to make sure your lenses are properly fitted. If you do get home and your vision isn’t comfortable, call your eye doctor to ask if you can be fitted again. With progressive lenses, you should have comfortable viewing at all distances.