Women end up requiring reading glasses early on because they hold books and other reading material closer to their eyes than men, says a new study.
The researchers found no difference in the ability of men and women to focus on objects at near distance. Women need bifocals earlier because of shorter arms, which means they hold things closer, raising their odds of things appearing blurred as they age.
Scientists from the University of California said women's need for reading glasses earlier was "likely due to differences in preferred reading distances or arm length as women tend to hold reading materials closer than men do," the journal Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science reported.
The researchers were studying presbyopia - the loss of near vision that occurs with age. The deterioration results from the stiffening of the eyeball's lens, which makes zooming in on close objects more difficult, leading to blurred vision and the need for reading glasses, according to the Daily Mail.
The researchers added: These findings could impact global vision care in multiple ways. The findings reinforce the need for presbyopia correction programmes for women - a group that often has greater unmet vision needs in developing countries.