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Dr. Chan
Dr. Chan, Ophthalmologist
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 356
Experience:  Board Certified in ophthalmology
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I have been wearing glasses since I was in 6th grade. I am

Resolved Question:

I have been wearing glasses since I was in 6th grade. I am 55, near sighted with an astigmatism. Until 2 prescriptions ago, once I put my glasses on in the morning they stayed on until I took them off at night. No matter what I was looking at. 2 prescriptions ago I noticed when my eyes got tired I would have a slight problem of focusing when reading books.
At my next eye exam I mentioned it to the doctor, who said that I was borderline for needing bifocals. Thinking at my age that the problem would only progress, I allowed the doctor to include a weak no-line bifocal in my prescription. After 5 plus years of wearing that prescription, I found it easier to pull the glasses off when reading up close. My nearsighted sight seems to have remained near the same level it has been all my life.
So I went to get new glasses without bifocals & find I can't read upclose at all with the glasses on. Why can't I where the glasses even when reading up close. I still read fine with them off.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Chan replied 7 years ago.



You are experiencing the symptoms of presbyopia. When you were younger, you were able to focus at all distances with the same prescription. As we get into our 40's and beyond, the focusing becomes separate at differing distances. That is, you need different prescriptions to see at far and at near. Your prescription for seeing far will no longer allow you to see at near. That is why you now need a bifocal to focus at near (with your glasses on). You can still see near without your glasses because you are nearsighted (but you can't see far without your glasses). Likewise, you can see far with your glasses, but not without them. In order to do both with your glasses, you need the bifocals.


I hope this helps and thank you.

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