Visual Problems at 40 and Beyond

Right after a midlife crisis, most people realize that they are now unable to read things that they could read perfectly well before. There’s no reason to worry when this happens.

Just like bones, eyes are affected by aging-related problems. Although people of any age can go through visual problems, it’s more likely to happen after 40.

There are a few common eye problems that come with age:

Cataracts: This condition can develop with age and has been reported on up to half of individuals between 65 and 74. It’s basically when the lens of your eye clouds up, impairing your vision. Cataracts can be treated through an outpatient surgical operation to replace the clouded parts of the lens.

Presbyopia: Another condition often associated with aging where the eye gets stiffer as you grow old makes it harder to focus on nearby objects. This condition is responsible for the struggle in reading labels associated with old age. Many people solve this through affordable reading glasses, but you might also want to get a midlife vision check-up once you need them.

Dry eye syndrome: This is another condition that can be expected with age and affects up to 15 million adults in the US. It occurs when your eyes can no longer make tears, causing a rash or burning sensation on the dry eyes. There are many ways to treat dry eye syndrome, including eye drops that simulate artificial tears, topical prescription drugs, and a device to stimulate tear production.

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD): A condition that affects the retina, tissue at the back of your eye, causing distorted vision and possibly a blind spot in the field of view. Medical or laser therapy can be used to prevent or delay vision loss.

Glaucoma: A very common but often symptom-less and painless eye condition that occurs after 40. If not treated, glaucoma can lead to permanent blindness. The most common treatment for glaucoma is eye drops. Your doctor may, however, recommend surgery or laser procedure.

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