Presbyopia and Age By Monterey County Eye Associates on August 11, 2023

man squinting at his phoneMillions of people suffer from vision impairment, but not all types of vision loss are the same. Diagnosing the type of vision loss and the degree of vision loss is vital to restoring clear eyesight. One of the most common forms of vision impairment as a person ages is presbyopia.

Presbyopia is a deterioration of close-up or reading vision. Unlike refractive errors that many people are born with, presbyopia develops as a person ages. Here, eye doctors at Monterey County Eye Associates, which serves MontereyCASalinas, and King City, explain how age and presbyopia are linked and when individuals may experience the beginning stages of this type of vision loss.

What Causes Presbyopia?

Presbyopia is an age-related condition that is caused by a hardening of the eye’s lens, which occurs gradually as a person ages. As the lens hardens, it becomes less flexible. The shape of the lens can also change. The loss of flexibility and the change in lens shape makes it more difficult for the eye to focus properly. Presbyopia specifically affects the ability to focus on objects that are near and fine details, so text, images, and other close items appear blurry and a person may require more light to see.

When Does Presbyopia Start?

People age at varying rates, so it is impossible to know exactly when they may experience the early stages of presbyopia. However, it is primarily a middle-aged condition, meaning it usually starts during a person’s early to mid 40s. Presbyopia can continue to worsen as the eye ages, with most people experiencing more progressive symptoms up to the age of 65. 

In rare situations, presbyopia may develop before a person reaches middle age. This condition, known as premature presbyopia, is a risk for people with medical conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and multiple sclerosis, as well as those who drink alcohol regularly or use certain medications such as antidepressants, antipsychotics, and antihistamines.

Symptoms of Presbyopia

Presbyopia is a progressive condition so symptoms may develop at different stages of the disease. Some of the most common symptoms of presbyopia include:

  • Blurry vision when reading or looking at small details
  • The need to hold reading material at a further distance
  • Headaches or eye strain when reading or working on a computer
  • The need for additional light when reading or performing up-close work

Can Presbyopia Be Prevented?

Presbyopia is an age-related form of farsightedness. Although it may develop later for some, the aging process is unavoidable, so everyone will experience presbyopia to some degree at one point in their lives. While presbyopia cannot be prevented, there are treatments available to restore clear vision. Our eye doctors work with patients to determine the ideal treatment option to meet their unique needs.

Contact Us Today

If you have experienced changes in your close-up vision as you’ve aged, you may be suffering from presbyopia. To discuss your concerns and learn about potential treatment options, send a message to Monterey County Eye Associates and schedule an appointment.

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The team of doctors at Monterey County Eye Associates

Monterey County Eye Associates
Monterey Bay Eye Center

Our team of ophthalmologists provides state-of-the-art eye care using the latest technology. They are proud to be affiliated with: 

  • AAO: American Academy of Ophthalmology
  • ABO: American Board of Ophthalmology

To schedule an appointment at one of our four ophthalmologist office locations in Monterey, Salinas, and King City, contact us online or call (831) 424-1150.

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