Our optometrist, Jenny Wu talks about Presbyopia, eye strain and how we can help you.

Many patients come to me after their 40th birthday complaining that their ‘arms are not long enough any more’. They usually say this as they demonstrate with their arms frustratingly stretched out, squinting at the small texts on their smartphone.

‘I have to enlarge the texts or pull my arm further away or squint, it’s giving me a headache.’

Does this sound familiar? Perhaps you have had perfect vision all your life and all of a sudden, your near vision is not as perfect any more. In this digital age, this phenomenon is occurring earlier in life, even office workers in their 30s come to me complaining of eye strain after many hours spent in front of their computer screen.

So what is actually going on?

If you haven’t heard of the term presbyopia, let me explain. Presbyopia is the decline in near focusing ability that occurs with age. Unfortunately, you cannot avoid presbyopia, even if you’ve never had a vision problem before.

Why does it occur?

The lens inside our eyes need to change shape in order to focus on objects at various distances. When we are young, the lens is soft and flexible and able to change shape easily. As we get older, our lenses thicken and stiffen and lose their elasticity. This process actually begins to occur decades before we notice the symptoms, usually in our teens. As a result, usually after our 4th decade, we find it harder to change focus between distance and near, we also find it harder to focus on small prints close to us.

Although there is no way to stop or reverse this normal aging process, there are many things we can do to deal with this frustrating day to day issue. A new study published in The Lancet journal has estimated that more than 1 billion people in the world are vision impaired from presbyopia because they do not have access to a pair of reading glasses. At Eyes on Brighton, we can offer many different solutions from glasses to contact lenses.

Book and eye test or feel free to come in and talk to us about single vision reading, occupation, bifocal or multifocal glasses, as well as monovision and multifocal contact lenses. There is such a vast range of solutions that can be tailored to suit your needs, just ask one of our friendly optometrists and we will be more than happy to chat with you and discuss.