You might remember your parents or grandparents always using reading glasses to check small print or see fine details. As you age, the structures of your eyes change over time. Typically, most people start needing to use reading glasses at some point to compensate for lost flexibility in and around their eyes.
So, when will you need to start using reading glasses? Everyone is different, but most patients get their first pair or readers sometime between the ages of 41-60. Whenever you’re ready for reading glasses, the care team at Smart Eye Care of Brooklyn, New York will be ready to help you pick the right lens strength and look for your new accessories.
The effects of aging on your eyes
Sometimes we tell younger people that they have “old eyes,” but that typically refers to perceived emotional, rather than physical, age. You can’t see the changes that take place in the structures of your eyes over time, but they impact the quality of your vision after a certain point.
Beginning in your 40s, the internal lenses in your eyes start to lose flexibility. You may struggle more to shift your focus from distant objects to closer ones. This effect increases over time.
If your close vision worsens enough for you to be diagnosed with presbyopia, you’ll need reading glasses to help you make out many details. By your 60s, your vision will likely have re-stabilized, and you won’t need to keep adjusting your prescription any further.
Risk factors for presbyopia
Some people’s eyes worsen enough to require corrective lenses at a younger age than others’. Certain risk factors can increase your chances of early-onset presbyopia. You might be at a higher risk of developing presbyopia in your 40s if you:
- Have a chronic condition, like high blood pressure or diabetes
- Have a family history of macular degeneration or glaucoma
- Spend a lot of time reading
- Work in a job that exposes you to eye hazards
- Take medications related to arthritis, anxiety or depression, high cholesterol, and thyroid conditions
How to know when you need reading glasses
If you have worsening presbyopia, some common signs and symptoms can let you know that it’s time to take action in response to age-related changes in your eyes. You may find that you:
- Struggle with smaller print, especially in dim light
- Find yourself holding books farther away to read them
- Experience headaches after reading
- Have eye pain after reading or other extended close visual focus, such as sewing
If you already use glasses to correct your vision, you may need to switch to multifocal lenses as you age. With an eye exam at Smart Eye Care, you can identify your reading glasses needs, including the right intensity of magnification for your first pair. You could also potentially benefit from contact lenses, or even laser surgery to restore your close vision.
Schedule your appointment at our New York City, New York offices over the phone, or book your appointment online.