Henry Smith and Hamylton, Opticians since 1887

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HEALTH & EYECARE - PRESBYOPIA

HEALTH & EYECARE - PRESBYOPIA

Presbyopia is a condition where the eye exhibits a STEADILY REDUCED ability to focus on near objects with age.

The word presbyopia comes from the Greek word presbys, meaning "old man" or "elder", and the Neolatin suffix -opia, meaning "sightedness", giving rise to the laymen’s definition often seen in consumer articles or medical glossaries, "old eyes".

Like grey hair and wrinkles, presbyopia is a symptom caused by the natural course of aging. The first signs of presbyopia are eyestrain, difficulty seeing in dim light, problems focusing on small objects and/or fine print--are usually first noticed between the ages of 40-50. The ability to focus on near objects declines throughout life.

The first symptoms most people notice are difficulty reading fine print, particularly in low light conditions, eyestrain when reading for long periods, blur at near or momentarily blurred vision when transitioning between viewing distances. Many extreme presbyopes complain that their arms have become "too short" to hold reading material at a comfortable distance.

Presbyopia symptoms, like other focus defects, become much less noticeable in bright sunlight due to the action of the iris closing to a smaller diameter. As with any lens, increasing the focal ratio of the lens increases depth of field by reducing the level of blur of out-of-focus objects (compare the effect of aperture on depth of field in photography).

A delayed onset of seeking correction for presbyopia has been found among those with certain professions and those with miotic pupils. In particular, farmers and homemakers seek correction later, whereas service workers and construction workers seek eyesight correction earlier.

For further information please visit http://www.presbyopia.org/