How to Combat Vision Changes as You Age
Most people do not notice any significant changes to their vision until their late 30s or early 40s. Typically, most vision prescriptions remain consistent with minor changes before this age. As such, most people are ideal candidates for corrective laser vision surgery like LASIK from a qualified ophthalmologist eye surgeon.
After 40 is when aging changes in the eye can start to occur. If you have had perfect vision up to this time, the changes may be gradual. On the other hand, if you have worn glasses or contacts and did not get laser surgery, the loss of visual acuity could be more noticeable.
Problem: A Decrease in Up-Close Vision
The first type of vision change noticed when people are in their 40s and 50s is called presbyopia. The most notable presbyopia symptom is it is harder to make out small print, as when you are reading. If you must hold a book or object away from you to see the print, then you probably have presbyopia. Once we reach our 50s, presbyopia becomes more noticeable.
Solution: Correct Your Vision
Presbyopia can be corrected by wearing prescription glasses or contacts. You can even consider different types of laser vision eye surgery to correct this condition and not worry about wearing glasses or contacts.
Problem: A Decrease in Wetness in the Eye
Another condition common in the 40s and 50s is dry eye. This occurs when the eyes are not producing enough fluid (tears) to keep them moist. The eye can feel itchy or like there is something in them.
Solution: Discuss potential treatments with your ophthalmologist.
One potential treatment is using prescription eye drops to help keep the eyes moist. Laser eye surgery may also help and will eliminate the need for eye drops.
Problem: A Decrease in Visual Contrast
In the late 50s and early 60s, you may notice that it is harder to see objects, as they appear to blend into the background around them. Another common sign of a decrease in visual contrast is “night blindness,” where it is harder to see when driving at night.
Solution: Get an eye exam to have your condition diagnosed.
Your ophthalmologist could recommend laser vision surgery to resolve the visual contrast problem. Imagine having “HD” (high definition) vision and seeing bright and vibrant colors!
Problem: A Loss of Visual Acuity from “Cloudy” Eyes
If you notice that the pupils of your eyes have what appear to be small white-colored clouds on them, this is the early stage of cataracts. This condition typically starts to occur once people are in their 60s or older.
Cataracts cause a gradual loss of visual acuity as they progress. Eventually, the “cloud” will continue to grow until it covers the entire pupil, and you are essentially blind.
Solution: Get cataract laser vision surgery.
Cataracts are one eye condition that is easy to correct and fix using laser surgery to restore your vision. The natural lens of the eye is replaced with a prescription artificial lens. In some cases, you may no longer require glasses or contacts after your cataract laser surgery.
How to Reduce Risks of Vision Changes
Even though laser eye surgery can correct most vision problems, there are other things you can do throughout your life to help too. Make sure to see your ophthalmologist annually, eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, get plenty of rest each night, and wear UV-blocking sunglasses when outdoors.
If you have noticed a change in your vision or a loss of visual acuity, or you want to find out what laser surgery options are available to help correct your vision, please feel free to contact Dougherty Laser Vision at (805) 870-9482 today!