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DP: EyeCare Column: Can my prescription get better?

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Q:  At my last eye exam, my doctor told me my vision had gotten better.  I have never heard of such a thing, and wonder how less prescription could make me see better?

A:  You would likely be surprised how often this happens!  I suppose we all think our vision naturally

“ gets worse” as we get older.    In reality, for several reasons, our vision correction can actually improve in time.  In general, the most surprised patients are those with nearsightedness.  Those folks, who have good near vision but blurry distance, become less nearsighted…often in their 30’s and 40’s.  On the other hand, most farsighted people become more farsighted as the years roll by.

The other part that surprises people is how can “less” prescription make you see better?  Think of your vision like a recipe including salt.  The very best taste requires just the right amount of seasoning.   Either too much, or too little, results in less than ideal results.  Your vision correction is just like that.

While several potential causes can result in vision changes, the most common is thought to be changes in the shape of the crystalline lens inside our eyes.  The lens continues to grow new tissue all our life.  It becomes cloudy eventually, but the growth also can cause shape changes.  Those natural shape changes alter the focusing power of this little magnifying glass inside our eyes.  That means changes in our vision correction…..our prescription.

So accept your good news, it is very common.  But also be aware that these  changes may be the earliest beginnings of cataracts many, many years later.  We do know that UV ( ultraviolet radiation ) from the sun causes faster clouding of our natural lens.   Blocking out UV with good quality UVA/UVB blocking lenses may slow your gradual lens clouding, and delay the need for cataract surgery.

May 15th Post (1)