Reading glasses…they’re both wonderful and terrible. They miraculously make the words jump off the page in long-forgotten clarity, but they seem never to be on hand when you need them. But why do you need them? You celebrated your 40th birthday and 2 weeks later you awaken in the morning unable to read your text messages. You succumb to the drug store readers and two years later, you need stronger readers. Are these vision changes something that you can impact by exercising your eye muscles, avoiding reading glasses, wearing weak reading glasses, or eating carrots? The answer to all of these questions is No.
Eye doctors will tell you that blurred near vision in your 40’s and beyond is the result of a stiffening of the lens inside of the eye, a lens that once was flexible and able to change the power of the eye to magnify fine print, but gradually stiffens with age to require the help of reading glasses. This anatomical change is genetically programmed and inevitable and the use or lack thereof of reading glasses does not affect it.
So, what are your options? You can wear reading glasses, the power of which will change every few years as the lens continues to stiffen in time. You can wear any one of several multifocal or bifocal eyeglasses so that the reading power you need is readily available anytime you look down at your phone, even without the need for a prescription in the top part of your lenses. You can wear contact lenses that allow you to see far and close without being dependent on eyeglasses during your busy workday or night out to dinner. …Or you could have your children read the menu to you until they go off to college (We don’t recommend this option).
There are some incredible contact lenses available that provide great comfort and superior vision and there have been some remarkable advances in eyeglasses lenses, making vision feel more natural and crystal clear.