Adult and Childrens Opticians
Cardiff Est. 1989

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Reading and Balance Problems

Functional Vision As We Get Older (50+)

Many people feel that their vision seems to fail them as they get older.

I’m not talking about the need for reading glasses, the genuine loss of sight or visual field as a result of eye disease such as cataract, glaucoma or macula degeneration, that more commonly affects us with advancing years.

Very often people in their middle to late years, with perfectly healthy eyes, feel that they cannot “see” as well as they would like, or cannot concentrate properly on a book like they used to, or frequently falling asleep when reading or watching TV, in spite of wearing their glasses.

Despite “passing” regular eye tests, some people struggle to take in road signs fast enough and so avoid driving in unfamiliar places and in fast or busy traffic.

Some lose the ability to judge space when parking or even when walking around objects. They become a bit clumsy, misjudging their step when negotiating kerbs, knocking drinks, bumping edges of cabinets and doorways, and feel generally unstable and at risk of falling.

Below is a list of some common visual complaints that are frequently functional in origin.

  • Loss of balance, prone to accidents and falls
  • Insecure with small heights (kerbs and walls) and broken pavement
  • Difficulty driving at higher speed such as on the motorway
  • Loss of ability to park or drive in busy traffic
  • Loss of ability to play sports, such as tennis and golf
  • Difficulty with escalators and stairs (Loss of ability to make time distance judgements)
  • Difficulty finding objects at near and far
  • Loss of awareness of what is occurring around.
  • Insecure in unfamiliar places
  • Loss of directional concepts
  • Loss of ability to visualise what is heard
  • Loss of ability to read and absorb content
  • Difficulty concentrating on the computer screen
  • Loss of depth perception

Understanding this relatively common problem requires some explanation of how visual skills develop in the first place.

Reading balance problems

Vision Therapy can combat decline in functional visual skills

Combined with modern lenses, such as enhanced readers and indoor varifocals, your visual performance can be significantly improved.

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