As part of the natural aging process, our eyesight begins to diminish. This gradual loss of the ability to focus on nearby objects and to see them clearly is referred to as presbyopia. The development of presbyopia is a result of hardening of the eye’s lens, which prevents the lens from adjusting and changing shape to focus on objects at different distances. Symptoms of presbyopia are generally first noticed in the early to mid-forties and the condition continues to progress throughout the fifties and sixties.
Experiencing blurred while trying to read things being held at a normal reading distance and needing to hold items further away to see the letters more clearly are signs of the onset of presbyopia. Since presbyopia is a normal part of aging, almost everyone from middle age on will experience it to some degree even if they have never had any other vision problems. Although presbyopia cannot be prevented or avoided, you can reduce the impact that the condition has on your daily life by having your eyes checked regularly by your eye care practitioner and obtaining treatment early on.
While reading glasses and bifocals are commonly thought of as the main treatment of presbyopia, it is possible to restore your vision with contact lenses. Contact lenses for treating presbyopia are available in soft lenses as well as rigid gas permeable lenses.
Alternating Bifocal Contact Lenses – Alternating bifocal lenses are similar to traditional bifocal eyeglasses. Since there are two different prescriptions or powers on each lens, your pupil alternates between the two when you look upward or downward.
Simultaneous Bifocal Contact Lenses – Simultaneous bifocal contacts have two powers on each lens; however, the different prescriptions are blended on the lens and the eye determines which power is needed based on the distance being viewed. These lenses feature a design that is similar to progressive bifocal contact lenses.
Monovision Contact Lenses – When monovision contacts are prescribed to treat presbyopia, the dominant eye is fitted with a lens for distance and the non-dominant eye with a lens for seeing near.
With the wide variety of options available to treat presbyopia, you can easily and comfortably correct your vision with contact lenses. If you are interested in wearing contact lenses to correct your presbyopia, contact your eye care practitioner to set up an appointment for an eye exam and contact lens fitting. A licensed eye care practitioner will be able to determine which type of contacts will be the best fit for your vision needs.
You can find more information about wearing contact lenses to treat presbyopia at Sanders Contacts. Elizabeth is a contributing author for Sanders Contacts, a comprehensive site dedicated to helping you improve your vision.