How Aging Impacts Your Prescription and Eyewear Needs

Aging can bring about a variety of changes to our vision, from mild inconveniences to severe vision loss. These changes can be gradual, often going unnoticed until they start to interfere with our daily lives. Understanding these changes as early as possible can help us better manage our visual health and maintain our quality of life as we age.

Understanding How Aging Impacts Vision

As we age, various changes occur in our eyes that can affect our vision. One of the most common changes is the reduced elasticity of the lens, which can make it harder to focus on objects up close, a condition known as presbyopia. Other common age-related vision changes include a decrease in the pupil's size, resulting in the need for more light to see clearly, and a decrease in the number of nerve cells, which can lead to a reduction in peripheral vision.

Aging can also lead to more serious eye diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, and cataracts. These conditions can significantly impact your vision, sometimes leading to vision loss if not managed properly. However, regular eye exams can help detect these diseases early, allowing for better treatment outcomes.

What Is Presbyopia?

Presbyopia is a common vision condition that affects most people as they age. It's caused by a loss of elasticity in the lens of the eye, which makes it harder to focus on objects up close. Symptoms of presbyopia typically start to appear around the age of 40 and can include difficulty reading small print or doing close-up work, eyestrain, and headaches.

Eyewear Needs as You Age

As your vision changes with age, so too will your eyewear needs. For instance, you might find that you need more light to see clearly, so you might benefit from glasses with anti-reflective coating, which can help reduce glare and maximize the amount of light entering your eyes. Similarly, as your color perception changes, glasses with color-enhancing lenses can help make colors appear more vibrant.

If you have presbyopia, you'll likely need reading glasses, bifocals, or progressive lenses. Reading glasses are a simple and affordable solution, but they only correct close-up vision, so you'll need to take them off for distance vision. Bifocals, on the other hand, have two different prescriptions in one lens, allowing you to see both near and far without changing glasses.

Exploring Multifocal Lenses

Multifocal lenses, like bifocals and progressive lenses, are an excellent solution for those with presbyopia. They have multiple prescriptions in one lens, allowing you to see clearly at different distances without needing to switch between different pairs of glasses.

However, there's a difference between these two types of multifocal lenses. Bifocals have a distinct line separating the two prescriptions, while progressive lenses have a seamless transition between prescriptions. This makes progressive lenses a more aesthetically pleasing option, as they look just like single vision lenses.

Despite the initial adjustment period to multifocal lenses, they offer a convenient and effective solution to the changing vision needs that come with age.


The process of aging and vision is a complex one, bringing about changes that can impact your prescription and eyewear needs. However, with regular eye exams and the right eyewear, these changes can be effectively managed.

If you are experiencing changes in your vision due to aging, schedule an eye exam today. Visit Norwood Family Eye Care in our Bartlett, Tennessee, office. Call 901-617-8095 to book an appointment today.

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