Why do you need reading glasses?

09 March 2021

Author: Kate Green

reading glasses

Visual deterioration with age


When you reach your early to mid-40s, you probably find yourself holding small print further and further away from you, in order to be able to read it properly. You might even find yourself regularly switching between your reading glasses and your regular glasses constantly, which can start to feel very frustrating, particularly if good near vision is something you rely on for work.


You can take comfort in knowing that you are not alone in this as it is a natural part of the ageing process. As you get older, every part of your body begins to change and show the effects of the passing years, and your eyes are no different. This condition is called presbyopia and, just like with most age-related conditions, it will usually progress in severity over time. While you might need reading glasses with a +1 prescription in your 40s, you could require +2 in your 50s, and so on.


Inside your eye, you have the lens which is responsible for your near vision. As you flick between different visual ranges, the lens flexes to allow your eye to focus and refocus repeatedly. As you grow older, the lens becomes less flexible and starts to harden, making it more difficult for you to read with ease at close visual ranges.


Symptoms of the beginnings of presbyopia


If you’re in your early to mid-40s, you might be starting to experience some of the following scenarios:

  • Getting headaches when working at computers for long periods
  • Having to hold newspapers further away to focus on them properly
  • Struggling to read in dim lighting


If your job requires you to rely on your close vision regularly, for example as a seamstress, you may need reading glasses sooner than most. This could also be the case if you are long-sighted or have been exposed to a high level of UV radiation over your life, as this can affect the elasticity of your eye’s lens.


How can you eliminate the need for reading glasses?


We offer several vision correction treatments at Optimax from LASIK and LASEK to cataract surgery and refractive lens exchange procedures. Monovision laser eye surgery is an option for patients who are happy to have one eye corrected for near vision, while the other eye is responsible for distance vision. This would allow you to ditch the reading glasses, as each of your eyes sees well at its respective visual range, working together to provide the overall picture.


Another form of laser eye surgery for people who want to rid themselves of reading glasses is multifocal laser surgery PresbyMAX. This laser eye treatment works on a similar principle to multifocal lenses, by reshaping the eye’s surface into precise focal points. This provides good vision at all distances, whether the object is near, far, or in between. The technique can also treat visual defects during the procedure. While more standard LASIK/LASEK procedures are mostly suitable for people in their 20s and 30s, PresbyMAX is often a great option for those in their 40s and 50s who don’t want reading glasses anymore.


However, the most popular choice at Optimax for treatment for reading glasses is multifocal lens surgery. Lens surgery involves removing the eye’s natural lens, which has lost its elasticity with age, and replacing it with an artificial lens. A multifocal lens provides multiple focal points which gives you good vision for close, middle and distant visual ranges, allowing you to ditch the reading glasses. An added benefit of this treatment is that you won’t need cataract surgery later in life, as a cataract can only form on the eye’s natural lens, and not an artificial one.


Ditch your reading glasses for good


If you’d like to experience life without reading glasses, please do get in touch. You can request further information here, book a consultation online, or give us a call on 0800 093 1110 if you’d like to speak to a customer advisor over the phone. We look forward to helping you achieve the vision you deserve.

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