When you need your vision corrected for far away and a different prescription for reading, the choices in eyeglasses are pretty straightforward. However, when you would rather wear contact lenses, the choices can become a little confusing. Around the age of forty, people start to notice a decrease in their ability to focus on near objects. But it doesn’t mean you have to give up your contact lenses. This article is designed to review the options for contact lens wearers over forty.
Presbyopia is an age-related condition where it becomes too difficult for the lens inside the eye to change shape enough to clear up the vision up close. As such, people start pushing the print further away and in general, struggle with their near vision. This leads to eye strain, headaches, and can decrease work efficiency as well. For eyeglass wearers, remedies include bifocals, progressive no-line lenses, or reading glasses.
What are the options for contact lens wearers?
The options for contact lens wearers are different than they are for those who prefer eyeglasses. The options fall in to three categories. Here you go:
Bifocal or Multifocal Contact Lenses
Many manufacturers now produce bifocal (also called multifocal or progressive) contact lenses. The lenses work by allowing you to look through the distance portion and the near portion of the lenses at the same time, referred to as “simultaneous” vision. With bifocal eyeglasses, you only look through the portion of the lens designed for a particular distance, but with this contact lens design you’re looking through both portions of the lenses at once. At first, this will take some adjustment, but many people are very pleased with this option
Monovision design is where the doctor prescribes one contact lens for far away in one eye and a near contact lens is the other eye for near vision. This technique requires the brain to pay attention to one eye at a time, and therefore requires some adjustment as well. For patients with particular prescription needs, this is a better option than bifocal contact lenses.
Reading glasses and contact lenses
For patients who demand very crisp vision, this option may be the best. In this situation, both eyes are corrected for distance vision and reading glasses are used for near tasks. Yes, wearing eyeglasses over the contact lenses may not be the option desired, but the clearer vision makes this an option worth exploring.