The Big Four-Oh
Think about it. More than half of the world’s 7.3 billion people have some sort of vision problem. If you belong to the minority who were born with good genetics and 20/20 eyesight, congratulations! You probably won’t spend thousands of dollars on doctor’s appointments, contact lenses, glasses or corrective surgery until you reach a ripe old age.
The magic word here is probably, because a lot can happen after countless years of spending time under the sun without UV protection and spending time glued to the TV or computer screen. If you just reached your 40’s, it wouldn’t hurt to head to the nearest eye doctor for a routine eye exam, especially if you haven’t been before or if you’re several years removed from your last visit.
If you just turned 40 however, don’t hit the panic button just yet. Take this magical time in your life to plan ahead and schedule appointments with an eye doctor every 2 years. Even if you feel that you don’t need a checkup and you can see perfectly, it won’t hurt to validate your good eyesight. Remember, some eye problems have no symptoms until it’s too late. A visit to the optometrist can rule out anything lurking in the background.
Age brings about wisdom, serenity and unfortunately, vision problems. The performance of your eyes will decline as you grow older, just like your physical strength and good looks. Presbyopia is a normal, age-related change in the eye’s ability to focus, and will progress over time. There is no avoiding presbyopia, but it can be corrected by wearing bifocals or having surgery.
Age brings about many other eye problems such as age related macular degeneration, glaucoma and cataracts. If you have a family history of eye disease, or if you’re having difficulty focusing on objects, now would be a good time to get an eye exam.
Signs you might need Glasses
Aside from age ruining the “no glasses party”, there are some other warning signs you should be aware of. Simple vision problems that are left untreated can spiral out of control and become more serious. Here’s a list of warning signs you should watch out for that could indicate a problem:
- You have a hard time seeing objects both at a distance and up-close. This is a sign that you may have astigmatism.
- Blurred close-up vision, which can be a sign of hyperopia, also know as farsightedness.
- Objects at a distance are out of focus. This is usually diagnosed as myopia, or nearsightedness.
- Your eyes take longer to adjust from dark to light surroundings and vice versa.
- Your eyes don’t adjust to the dark at all and you have difficulty seeing at night.
- Squinting all the time, especially when reading, working with small objects or working in front of a computer.
- Painful eye strain or eye fatigue, especially when driving, watching TV and playing video games.
- Frequent headaches, especially when exposed to bright light.
- You see halos around light sources.
- You’re seeing double.
Having one or more of these symptoms doesn’t always mean you have an eye problem and need to wear glasses. Nonetheless, when you notice any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with an optometrist immediately to ascertain what ails your eyes. Who knows, you might be lucky enough to add a fancy new accessory to your daily attire.