Q. Dr. Min, you see a lot of patients who are having difficulty with reading or seeing things up close. Can you tell us about this?
A. Yes, and this is something I certainly sympathize with at my present age. This condition is something called presbyopia and it generally hits people from their early forties to age fifty, as this is the most common age range. This is an issue that is created internally. We have a crystalline lens inside our eye that helps us focus between distance and up-close vision, and this is also what allows us to focus on reading material, computer screens, and printed material. As we hit our mid-forties typically our eyes gradually lose some of that focusing ability, and small print becomes very difficult to read, and average print becomes difficult as well. There are several treatments for this condition typically involving glasses and contact lenses, and these days even surgery, but primarily glasses and contact lenses. With glasses the two main options are reading glasses and bifocal type glasses that allow you to see both far away and up close. With contact lenses we can also do bifocal contact lenses that allow people to read, and there is also a technique called monovision. Monovision is where one eye is focused for distance and the other eye is focused for up close, and that also allows people to see well with their reading material.