Many of us have already analyzed the common eye disorders such as Myopia and Hyperopia. Presbyopia is somewhat related eye condition to above two but is different from the reason it’s caused, in presbyopia our eyes slowly loses the ability to focus on objects which are close. It’s common in people with progressive aging. Most people of 40 or more age get trouble reading things, such vision problems can be prompted due to several eye disorders, presbyopia being one of them.
Note: The United States has seen a rise in Presbyopia cases from 2006. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there were 112 million Americans that were presbyopic in 2006, which are expected to increase to 123 million by 2020.
Presbyopia differs from nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. The later ones are eye disorders associated with the shape of the eyeball and are mostly caused by environmental and genetic factors. On the other hand, Presbyopia is believed to generate from loss of flexibility and gradual thickening of the natural eye lens.
Let’s understand what exactly happens in Presbyopia:
When a ray of light enters the human eye, it passes through cornea followed by the pupil. The iris is the colored ring in our eye that flexibly opens and closes the pupil to adjust the light rays passing through it. After the pupil, the light rays pass through the eye lens. At its healthiest state, human eye lens modifies its shape to direct the light rays and focus them on the retina (at the back of your eye). However, this ability of the lens to bend the light rays fades away with age. Progressive aging makes it less flexible as it can’t change shape as smoothly. As a result, it becomes inefficient in directing the light ray properly to focus it on our retina.
Causes Of Presbyopia
When you are young, the lens in your eyes is flexible and relatively pliant. During this period, the eye lens is at their best functioning condition as it can readily change its shape or length with the help of a ring of tiny muscles that surrounds it. The muscles surrounding your eyes can comfortably adjust and reshape the eye lens to subsequently accommodate both distant and close images.
With natural aging, eye lens and muscles surrounding the lens slowly succumb their flexibility to become stiff. Consequently, the lens becomes incapable of changing its shape and fails to focus on close images. Such hardening of eye lens causes the loss of eye lens ability to focus directly on the retina.
Presbyopia can be managed by correcting the vision with contact lenses or corrective glasses. However, prevention is better than cure, and therefore it’s recommended to contact your family doctor or an eye specialist in case you recognize any symptoms of presbyopia. Furthermore, if you are 40 or above age, then you must get your eyes screened to identify early signs of an eye disorder.