Treatment options for presbyopia

Published on
January 13, 2023

It is estimated that in 2020, around 123 million Americans had presbyopia. Presbyopia is common in adults aged 45 and older, with an estimated prevalence of 83-88.9%.

Presbyopia occurs typically after the age of 40 and causes near objects to appear blurry. As we age, our eye's lens becomes less flexible, making it harder for us to focus on close objects. 

Symptoms of presbyopia may include the need to hold objects further away in order to see them clearly, eye strain when reading or doing other close-up work, and difficulty seeing small print. Presbyopia is a natural part of the aging process and is not a disease. It can be corrected with eyeglasses, contact lenses, or vision correction surgery.

What are the different treatment options for presbyopia?

Reading glasses

Reading glasses are a common solution for presbyopia. They work by magnifying the image of the object being viewed, making it appear larger and easier to focus on.

Reading glasses can be through a prescription from an optometrist or ophthalmologist. The strength of the prescription will depend on the severity of the presbyopia. Some people may only need a mild prescription, while others may require a stronger one. Reading glasses are typically worn only when needed for close-up tasks, such as reading or working on the computer.

It is important to note that reading glasses are not a cure for presbyopia and do not stop the condition from progressing. However, they can help improve near vision and make it easier to perform close-up tasks. If you are experiencing difficulty seeing up close and think you may have presbyopia, it is a good idea to see an optometrist or ophthalmologist for a comprehensive eye exam. They can determine the best treatment option for your needs. To schedule a comprehensive eye exam, please call (360) 491-2121.

Bifocal or multifocal lenses

If you already wear glasses for distance, you have a few options for addressing your near vision. You can wear two pairs of glasses, one for distance and one for reading, or you can opt for multifocal lenses. These lenses come in two types: bifocal and progressive. Bifocal lenses have a visible line separating the distance prescription from the reading prescription, while progressive lenses have a gradient that allows for intermediate distances as well.

Contact lens wearers also have options when it comes to presbyopia. You can wear reading glasses over your distance prescription contacts, or you can try mono vision or multifocal contact lenses. Mono vision means that one lens is focusing for distance and the other is focusing for near, which can take some getting used to as it can impact your depth perception. Multifocal contact lenses allow both eyes to see both distance and near, though some people may experience ghosting or shadowing with these lenses.

Intraocular lens (IOL)

Intraocular lenses are done in a surgical procedure to replace the eye's natural lens with a new lens in order to correct for a refractive error. IOLs are used to treat presbyopia because they can improve the focusing power of the eye. In particular, multifocal IOLs are designed to divide the light that enters the eye into two or more focal points, allowing the patient to see clearly at multiple distances. This can be a particularly effective treatment option for patients who are experiencing presbyopia and want to reduce or eliminate their dependence on reading glasses or bifocal lenses.

Most patients experience a significant improvement in their vision following IOL implantation and are able to return to their normal activities within a few days. It is important to note that IOLs are not suitable for all patients and that the best treatment option will depend on the individual patient's needs and goals.

To learn more about IOL or other treatment options for presbyopia, schedule an appointment with our eye doctor, please call (360) 491-2121.

Don't let presbyopia hold you back from seeing clearly! Contact us today to schedule an appointment and find the treatment option that's right for you.

It's important to note that the best treatment option for presbyopia will depend on your individual needs and how you use your eyes throughout the day. If you are experiencing difficulties with your near vision, make sure to discuss it with our optometrist during an eye exam so that they can recommend the best solution for you. To schedule a comprehensive eye exam, please call (360) 491-2121. Patients searching for advanced treatment for presbyopia and alternatives to reading glasses visit our clinic from all over Washington, and we are proud to be a leading provider of medical eye care services for patients from Olympia, Lakewood, Tacoma, and Lacey. 


Such a nice optician. My grandson is only 4 and needs glasses. We were so sad, but he explained the issues, and we will follow up as he suggested.

Anna P.

I had such a good experience with the clinic. Very friendly staff and doctor, did not have to wait for long to be called, and was treated respectfully. Thanks, American Family.

June S.

Dr. Zurcher has gone above and beyond what any other eye doctor has ever done to figure out what is going on with my eyes. Very happy with American Family Vision.

Christine R.

Family Vision Clinic changed our lives! My daughter was frequently car sick, and she was getting headaches every day, often painful enough that they brought her to tears. We saw a string of doctors and therapists, but we made no progress. Finally, we found Dr. Levi Zurcher and his eye therapist Rain. After ten weeks of eye therapy my daughter no longer gets headaches, and she no longer gets car sick. Daily tears are a thing of the past. I really can’t say enough about this clinic. It was fascinating to watch Dr. Zurcher work. For the first time, someone who knew what they were doing was intently studying my daughter, really trying to figure out all of her eye issues, and his therapist Rain is one of the most patient and lovely people that I’ve ever had the good fortune to meet. We’re finished with eye therapy—yay!—and I have switched to American Family Vision Clinic for all of my family’s other eye health needs.

Lars Wulff

Very professional, yet kind and helpful. They do what they can to make the appointment comfortable. I was running a bit late, I made sure ti call. They were able to switch me with a patient who was already there, they treated me with respect, and helped my son have confidence by getting him the eye care he needed that day. Thank you so much! Would recommend to anyone. It's a blessing that they care enough to work with people who have all different types of insurance from work to state coverage.

Justin E.

The staff is friendly. The Doc is very knowledgeable. The office is family friendly and everyone is so patient with the little ones.

Amy Fagerness
1 2 3



Discover effective treatment options for diabetic retinopathy; consult our eye care professionals to protect your vision and overall well-being

Treating diabetic retinopathy Treating diabetic retinopathy is a critical aspect of preserving vision and maintaining the overall quality of life […]

Read More
Carrots for eyes

Are Carrots Good for Your Eyes?

As an optometrist at American Family Vision Clinic in Olympia, one of the most common questions Dr. Levi Zurcher often […]

Read More

Understanding Foggy vision

Is foggy vision troubling you? Let our experienced optometrist restore your sight – book an appointment today and see the […]

Read More
see all blogs

Contact Us To Amplify Your EyeCare

American Family Vision Clinic Logo

Working Hours




400 Yauger Way SW. Bldg 1, Ste A Olympia, WA 98502
(360) 459-1097
Website Accessibility Policy
Safety protocols page
privacy policy
For Patients
Call Us
eyefile-adduserphone-handsetcalendar-fullarrow-uparrow-right linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram