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Eyes Over 40: How Does Your Vision Change as You Age?

After your 40th birthday, you’ve probably started to notice a couple changes to your vision. These normal, age related vision issues usually start to affect us after we reach our 40s. However, many of these vision problems can negatively affect your ability to see and require vision correction solutions. Here are some ways your eyes may change as you age and corrective measures you can use to keep seeing clearly. Presbyopia

Even people with 20-20 vision will experience some degree of presbyopia. Presbyopia begins after the age of 40 and is the normal loss of your near focusing ability. Many people experiencing presbyopia will notice:

  • Trouble seeing small print clearly More difficulty seeing print up close in dim lighting.

  • Having to hold your smartphone, reading material, and other objects farther from your eyes

  • Headaches, eye strain, and visual fatigue when reading and performing other near vision tasks especially for prolonged periods Eyeglasses with multifocal lenses are the most popular solution for presbyopia for people over age 40. These include:

  • Bifocal Lenses: Bifocal lenses are great for individuals who already wear corrective lenses. These lenses are divided into two powers: one for distance vision and the other for near vision.

  • Trifocal Lenses: Like bifocals,trifocals provide corrections for both near and far vision issues. However, trifocals offer an additional power zone for an intermediate segment,. This allows you to better see things like the car instrument panel on the dashboard and standard computer distances.

  • Progressive Lenses: Instead of just two or three power zones, progressive lenses provides vision correction that progresses in power from the top to the bottom of the lens giving you a wide range of clear focus points. This progression of correction eases eye strain and offers the most natural vision correction. If you are experiencing presbyopia, talk to your optometrist about which lens option is right for you. Dry Eyes

Symptoms of dry eye can range from mild to severe. These include:

  • A sensation of having something in your eyes

  • Stinging, burning or scratchy sensation in your eyes

  • Difficulty with nighttime driving

  • Stringy mucus in or around your eyes

  • Sensitivity to light

  • Eye redness

  • Difficulty wearing contact lenses

  • Blurred vision or eye fatigue

There are many causes of dry eyes, including allergies and environmental factors. The first step is to schedule an appointment with your optometrist for a comprehensive eye exam to determined where your symptoms are coming from.

Reduced Night Vision

Difficulty seeing after dark is another common issue after the age of 40. This results in a reduced ability to see clearly in reduced light situations, such as driving at night.

Night vision issues can be caused by a number of conditions, such as:

  • Glaucoma: A buildup of pressure in the eye which causes damage to the optic nerve. Vision loss, including your peripheral and night vision, is a common symptom.

  • Cataracts: When you age, the proteins in your eye can clump together and form into a cataract. As a result, the lens of the eye gets clouded. Symptoms of cataracts include: blurry vision, reduced night vision, and a haloing effect around lights

  • Aging: As you age, your eye’s photoreceptors decrease in density. This leads to the  normal night vision issues that come with aging eyes.

Your best defense against reduced night vision is to see your optometrist annually. These visits ensure that your glasses or contacts prescription is up to date, any health issues are diagnosed, and your vision is as sharp as possible in all conditions. Contact Eden Prairie Eye Care Today

Although vision issues are common after 40, your best defense is an annual eye exam. At Eden Prairie Eye Care, Dr. Oker will make sure your eyes and vision are as healthy as possible. She will work with you to find the best vision solution that has you seeing clearly and comfortably. Remember: many serious eye conditions can be detected and prevented with routine check ups. If you are experiencing any changes in vision, contact our office and schedule your comprehensive eye exam. Call us directly at (952) 944-2792 or submit a request online.


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