Using reading glasses

I’ve been using reading glasses for a while (6-8 month).
I don’t always need them depends on lighting condition, text size…

My question is :

should I always use them for reading not to strain my eyes unnecessary


should I try to resist wearing glasses whenever possible even if it makes reading a bit more uncomfortable so my eyes won’t get used to glasses as a norm ?

In other words: will wearing glasses damage my vision even further ?

I’m not an ophthalmologist, optometrist or optician, although I’ve been wearing glasses my whole life, so take this for what it’s worth.

Wearing glasses won’t damage your vision. Use them when you need them, don’t bother when you don’t.

In the last four years that I’ve been wearing reading glasses my eyes have definitely gotten worse. So, there’s definite proof for you, right?

Beats me, really.

Wearing them won’t change your eyes one way or another. You can put it off as long as you can, but eventually you will bite the bullet for comfort’s sake. Your eyes will continue to change whether you wear the glasses or not, and at some point you’ll give in and be much happier.

I was going to post a very similar question.

I managed to dodge turning 40 for a couple of years, but it has caught up with me at 43. I still have better eyes than a lot of friends (even with their corrective eyewear), but the degradation of my vision in the last couple of years is shocking.

I thought that the ability of the eyes to focus got poorer as you get older as the muscles that control the focus aren’t able to do their job. If that is true, then wouldn’t wearing the reading glasses stop ‘exercising’ those muscles and degrade the vision more quickly?

I picked up a pair of +1.25 reading glasses at the drug store for $2 (reg. $32!) and they do the trick, but I am wary of accelerating the change in my vision.

The muscles are fine; it’s the lens that is getting stiffer. Fighting this by refusing to wear glasses will not delay the process one bit, and will exhaust your eye muscles and cause headaches.

Did someone destroy the portrait in the attic?


I always figured that 40 was like the end of the warranty and parts would start dropping off. I made it through a couple of years before the rust started to show.

Youth has been a friend of mine despite the fact that we rarely get out to exercise much anymore. Maybe it was Youth that sent Age to bully me.

Good basic info from Mayo Clinic.

Also, for reasons having to do with optics (and like your mother always said), your eyes focus better in good light. Poor light doesn’t hurt your eyes but can tire you out trying to compensate, squint, etc.

If you can read comfortably without your glasses, no, you don’t have to wear them. Reading glasses such as you describe are meant to make reading easier and more comfortable, they are not meant to be riveted to your forehead, never to be removed.

I’ve wore glasses for over three decades now, and not just for reading. My eye docs have always said that if I could see something more clearly by removing my glasses by all means do so - then they laugh, because my uncorrected vision is pretty useless. But I do take my glasses off to thread needles, always have. Use your glasses to help you, not get in your way.

If you are wearing reading glasses due to pesbyopia or “old peoples’ eyes” then reading glasses ARE your norm now. Sorry to break it to you, but difficulty with up close vision is like gray hair, denial doesn’t make it go away. You can dye your hair and wear reading glasses, but your natural hair is still gray and your eyes aren’t focusing up close anymore. It is perfectly OK to dye your hair or wear reading glasses, anything to make your life more enjoyable is fine by me, but saying that wearing glasses will somehow increase your vision problems is like saying hair dye will make you go gray faster.

Yes, you probably WILL need more correction as you get older, but that’s not because your eye muscles have become weak, it’s because the structure of your eye is stiffer. This process will continue whether or not you wear glasses. Me, I feel if it is inevitable then I’ll do whatever I can to at least be comfortable.

No. But NOT wearing them when you should can make you miserable with headaches and eye strain.

If you could train yourself to not need glasses by not wearing glasses, you wouldn’t need glasses in the first place. After all, you weren’t wearing glasses before, and they weren’t getting better on their own. Vision doesn’t work that way.

Most people who wear glasses find that their vision gets worse over time - but that’s due to time passing & getting older, not the actual wearing of glasses. My vision pretty much leveled off when I was about 25, after getting steadily worse for about 12 years, and my prescription only changes very slightly now.

Actually, both my oldest sister and myself have found that, after wearing glasses for a few decades, our vision got better.

In her case… well I don’t know why, but apparently some people “outgrow” farsightedness, and apparently she was one of them.

In my case, I’ve been very nearsighted all my life. As we get older, we naturally grow farsighted past about 40 (hence the need for reading glasses). In my case, the natural effects of aging are diminishing the effects of my naturally dreadful eyesight. In other words, the last two times I went to the eye doc my prescription DEcreased.

Of course, your mileage may vary considerably. But glasses compensate for your vision deficiencies, they don’t make your uncorrected vision better or worse.

Thanks to everyone for your kind advises.
I understand now that glasses usually don’t affect one’s vision.

My idea of “resistance” to postpone wearing glasses for as long as possible
stems from ,apparently weak, analogy with elevators.

I can walk stairs or use an elevator.
Walking, even though it takes some effort, will keep me fitter for longer
so I will be able to walk for longer


I could use an elevator (more comfortable ) but in the process I will gradually loose my fitness and won’t be able to walk stairs anymore.
So I tried (in vain as it turns out ) to keep my vision “fitter “by avoiding glasses.

Ignorance fought.

The same thing happened with my husband. He went to get a new prescription because his eyes were bothering him, he wasn’t seeing as clearly as he should and he was getting headaches. It turned out that the reason for all of it was that his prescription was too strong. He got a weaker prescription that he only needs to wear sometimes now.

The optometrist gave the same explanation, the natural changes that come with age actually corrected the previous abnormalities. :slight_smile:

Ah, your analogy assumes you’re already healthy.

Compare eyes that need glasses to someone with a knee injury - walking up the stairs with a knee injury would just make it worse & more painful. You need to take the elevator or it’ll just get worse.