ageing eyes – presbyopia
The process of ageing certainly has its genetic components, but we know from everyday experience that our basic attitudes towards life determine much of our vitality and sense of youthfulness. Some people appear to be rigid and ageing at 40, whereas others approach 80 with zest, physical agility, and strength.
Likewise, there are people who must use reading glasses at the age of 35, and there are others who reach the age of 70 and are still able to read the evening paper without glasses. When an optometrist says that you will need reading glasses after the age of 40, he is assuming that you fit the normal stereotype for health in our present civilization. Perhaps you do. But on the other hand, perhaps you will remain in that minority that retains up-close focusing ability to a much older age.
Unfortunately, optometrists during their professional training are usually instructed that it is best to prepare their patients for the eventual development of presbyopia. Thus, we are told that it is natural to lose our clear vision after the age of 40, and that we should anticipate this development. We are programmed to believe that our eyes will fail us. What effect does this programming have on our visual vitality?
In working with presbyopic clients, I have seen time and again that temporary periods of complete up-close focusing occur when the person is in a relaxed, expansive, unconstricted state of mind. Presbyopia is an extremely variable condition. When a client is locked into a habitual self-concept of fatigue, time pressure, and lost vitality, presbyopia prevails. When the self-image is set aside and the person feels full of vitality, free of emotional restrictions, and joyful, visual functioning returns to the potential of earlier years.
So in dealing with presbyopia, we need to see that we are not dealing with a simple physiological development, static and not reversible. We are dealing with a general mind-state which manifests itself in the physical body.
Read more on presbyopia in the next post…
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