It's normal for vision to change as you get older. With good eye care, you can often limit the impact those changes have on your daily life. You might just need new glasses, contact lenses, or better lighting.
Common age-related vision changes include:
Your eyes start having trouble focusing on objects close up. Doctors call that presbyopia.
- Trouble reading small print
- Eye strain
What causes presbyopia? Over time, the lens of the eye hardens. Muscles around the lens also change with age. These changes make it harder for the lens to work.
An eye doctor can diagnose presbyopia and correct it with eyeglasses or contact lenses. Bifocals are glasses with the higher focusing power in the lower part of the lens. If you do not need glasses for distance, you may need only reading glasses.
Or, your doctor may suggest contact lenses, which can correct your vision and the need for glasses. Even if you can see far off, contacts can help your close vision. Options include bifocal contacts or monovision, in which you wear one contact to see close up and if needed a contact in your other eye to see far away.
Multifocal contact lenses allow you to see near, far, and everywhere in between.
Rarely, surgery is used to correct presbyopia, although the FDA has given approval to a device called the Kamra Inlay which can be surgically placed in one eye of a patient with presbyopia to help improve near vision. A Raindrop implant can also be placed under a LASIK type flap in one eye to improve reading vision.
Symptoms of a cataract may include: