Just as your skin ages and your hair thins and grays, your eyes age, too. This is one of the reasons it's so important for people who do not even wear glasses to continue to get regular eye exams. Here is a look at some of the conditions that can affect your aging eyes.


Around the age of 40, most people begin noticing it takes their eyes longer to focus. For example, they may be reading and then look up to the television across the room, and rather than instantly focusing, their vision will be blurry for a few seconds while their eyes adjust. This will then be followed by an increasingly difficult time reading small print.

Most people ignore it for a while and make do with inexpensive "cheaters," plastic reading glasses from the discount stores, but eventually, professional eyewear will be necessary. Whether you wear glasses or contact lenses currently or not, everyone gets presbyopia. Those who don't wear glasses typically end up being prescribed reading glasses, and those who were previously only near-sighted, unable to see far, will need their prescription changed to bifocals, with two different prescriptions on their lenses.


While not everyone develops cataracts, they are an extremely common occurrence in aging eyes, particularly as life expectancy grows longer with better medical technology. Cataracts can begin developing around the age of 40. If you notice your vision becoming blurred, especially in only one spot or one eye, you may be developing a cataract. A cataract occurs on your eye's lens. It is a leading cause of acquired blindness in adults.

There are different types of cataracts, and the type may determine your exact symptoms, but generally, vision will become increasingly blurry and the lens itself will look cloudy. Some lifestyle and dietary changes, such as quitting smoking, lowering your blood pressure, and taking Vitamin E supplements, may help reduce your likelihood of developing cataracts, but this doesn't always work. Thankfully, cataracts can be treated surgically when they become troublesome.

Dry Eyes

As aging progresses, the eyes also can have a hard time staying lubricated. Post-menopausal women in particular tend to have this problem. The eyes feel dry, gritty, and look red and irritated. Your eye doctor can prescribe artificial tears to help keep your eyes lubricated if the over-the-counter eye drops don't seem to be working well enough to do the job sufficiently.