As we get older, our eyes lose the ability to focus on near objects. This condition is called presbyopia. Even if you have never had a vision problem before, you cannot escape the effects of presbyopia.
Presbyopia usually occurs at around age 40 to 45. If you are having trouble reading up close and focusing on print, it may be time to invest in a pair of reading glasses to correct your vision.
What are reading glasses?
Loss of near vision is a normal part of the aging process. Reading glasses are single vision lenses that are designed to help people focus while reading and viewing near objects.
There are two main styles of reading glasses: full frame glasses, where the entire lens has been customized with a reading prescription, and half-eye frames, which are smaller glasses that are designed to sit lower on the nose. Full frame reading glasses are ideal for people who spend hours reading or studying close up material. Half-eye frames are better suited for sporadic reading (these lenses allow people to look down for near vision correction and see clearly above the lenses for distance vision). Both full frame and half-eye frame reading glasses can be custom-made or they can be purchased ready-made at a pharmacy.
It is important to keep in mind that reading glasses are not a substitute for existing corrective eyewear. They are designed to be worn on their own or over corrective contact lenses. For people who need vision correction at near and far distances, bifocals are a better choice than reading glasses.
What do reading glasses treat?
Reading glasses are designed to treat age-related loss of vision, or presbyopia. Everyone's vision deteriorates with age. After 40, the natural lens of the eye begins to stiffen and the focusing muscles of the eye start to weaken. The classic sign that you need reading glasses is when you start to hold books, menus, and newspapers farther and farther away in order to focus on the print.
Reading glasses help with close up reading, computer reading, and detail oriented activities like sewing.
Benefits of reading glasses
Virtually everyone over the age of 45 owns or will own a pair of reading glasses. Reading glasses effectively solve the problem of age-related loss of vision. By magnifying images, they reduce eyestrain, aid in reading if you wear contacts, and make it easier to use a computer.