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How Do You See?

Three ladies wearing glasses sit on a couch together.  A common question I hear in the exam room is, “Am I near-sighted or far-sighted?” This is something that can sound confusing at first, but it is easy to learn. If you wear glasses or contact lenses, or if you just want to gain some knowledge, please keep reading. The next time you take your glasses off or your contact lenses out, look at your surroundings. If you can see far away without any prescription, then you are far-sighted. You can see things far away without any help, therefore you are far-sighted. If the opposite is true and you can only see things close to you without any correction, then you are near-sighted. For people who wear glasses for both distance and near, meaning they wear progressive lenses, bifocal lenses, or have separate pairs of glasses for far away and up close, they have their own special category. This category is called presbyopia.

Presbyopia usually develops around the age of 40 years old. People in this age demographic might find themselves starting to hold things a little further away to see it more clearly. This works for a while, but then their arms aren’t long enough anymore. This is due to the natural aging of the lenses inside of our eyes. When we are young, they are flexible and able to adjust to the distance we hold objects from our eyes. As we get older, we lose that flexibility and bifocal or progressive lenses help make up for the difference. If you are noticing your arms aren’t quite long enough anymore, then it is time to make an appointment with your optometrist to find out what lens option would be best for you!

– Meghan Guinotte, OD