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As we prepare to turn back the clocks on 28th October, the days will start to get shorter, reducing daylight hours and plunging us into darkness. For adults around 40 years of age, the lack of natural daylight may start to seriously impact their vision as they experience difficulty in focusing at a close distance. This will make tasks such as applying make-up, shaving, reading a menu or newspaper more challenging. This natural condition is called presbyopia and with more than 26 million people in the UK over the age of 45, more and more people are experiencing this frustrating condition every day and most do not realise that reading glasses are not their only option. It’s expected that by 2030 our average life expectancy will reach 87 , which means that people will find they spend most of their life being presbyopic!

Difficulty in focusing on objects at a close distance may be the early beginnings of presbyopia, a condition that ultimately affects us all. This problem is more noticeable as the days get shorter and opticians often report that they diagnose more patients with presbyopia during this time of year as the darker evenings draw in. When faced with presbyopia, many assume that reading or varifocal glasses are the only cure, however other options are available.

Research amongst patients with presbyopia found that 82% of people cited reading small print on packages, labels, newspapers and magazines made them frustrated and left with eye strain or even headaches. With over two thirds of presbyopes agreeing that they feel self-conscious about needing vision correction, it is important that they realise the vision correction options available to them.

Saagar Hirani from Edmonds and Slatter Opticians comments: “Many people don’t realise the contributing factors to presbyopia such as dim lighting during the autumn and winter months as the evenings start drawing in. After we turn the clocks back, I typically see many new patients who struggle with focusing at a close distance. They may have been able to cope during the spring and summer but in the absence of natural sun light, they have a lot of difficulty and come to me for help.”

“Patients are often hesitant to try bifocal or varifocal glasses and jokingly call them ‘granny glasses’. What people don’t realise is that technology has evolved and there are options, such as multifocal contact lenses specially designed for people with presbyopia.” Saagar Hirani has been specially trained in fitting ACUVUE® OASYS® Brand Contact Lenses for PRESBYOPIA.

For those interested in finding out more about multifocal contact lenses and whether they are a suitable option for them can visit Edmonds and Slatter Opticians for a free contact lenses trial.

Please call our Blaby practice on (0116) 277 7733 for more information.