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As you get older, things begin to change. You might notice a few gray hairs pop up or you may find a few lines by your eyes. Speaking of eyes, you might also notice somewhere around your 40s that your vision just is not what it used to be. Even if you have had perfect vision your entire life, the things you look at up close suddenly begin to appear blurry. This is the result of a condition known as presbyopia, and Evergreen Eye Care can help.

What is Presbyopia?

Presbyopia is a common eye condition that occurs as you get older. As you age, even if you have previously had perfect vision, you might notice that things held at a normal reading distance suddenly appear blurry. This occurs because the natural lens in your eye becomes less elastic over time. It is often confused with farsightedness, which is caused by a misshapen eye that causes light rays to focus incorrectly.

When you look at things far away and then switch to up close, the muscles around the lens contract, which causes the lens to change shape. When you are young, the lens is elastic, so this change occurs easily. However, the lens stiffens as you grow older. It usually becomes noticeable in your late 30s to early 40s.

What are the Symptoms of Presbyopia?

There are a few symptoms that begin to appear starting around your late 30s that can point toward presbyopia.

  • Things that you once easily read at a normal reading distance suddenly appear blurry.
  • You may start to notice that you are holding reading materials out at a further distance in an attempt to get your eyes to focus on them.
  • Getting headaches from doing work up close. You may also experience eye strain or fatigue.

How is Presbyopia Diagnosed?

Presbyopia is diagnosed through a routine eye exam. This exam includes a refraction assessment and an evaluation of your overall eye health. A refraction assessment is done to determine if you have nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism, and presbyopia. We also dilate your eyes with special eye drops. Dilation allows us to see the interiors of your eyes.

Treatment Options for Presbyopia

Presbyopia cannot be cured, but there are plenty of treatments available to help you manage the symptoms.

  • Eyeglasses. If you have never worn eyeglasses before, you may be able to use the nonprescription readers. Test out the different strengths, starting with the lowest, to see if they improve your vision. If not, you may need a prescription lens. Prescription lenses include readers, bifocals, trifocals, and progressive multi-focals.
  • Contact Lenses. Some people do not want to wear glasses all of the time. Contacts may be a good alternative. Contacts are available as monofocal, bifocal, and modified monovision.
  • Corneal inlays. Corneal inlays are small plastic rings with central openings. A corneal inlay is inserted into the cornea of one eye. The central opening functions like a pinhole camera that allows focused light.
  • Refractive surgery. Refractive surgery involves changing the shape of the cornea. When used for presbyopia, it is used to improve vision in the nondominant eye. There are several different surgical procedures, including conductive keratoplasty, LASIK, and photorefractive keratectomy.

If you have noticed changes in your up-close vision, presbyopia may be to blame. Call Evergreen Eye Care at 360-573-3937 today to schedule your appointment.


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  • Friday
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  • 1319 NE 134th ST.
  • Suite 107
  • Vancouver, WA, 98685


  Mon - Thur: 8:30 - 6; Fri: 8 - 12