If you wear eyeglasses, you’re not alone — some 25% of the world’s population requires vision correction of some sort. Whether you’ve needed glasses since you were a child, or you have always had 20/20 vision, there are some telltale signs that you might need to buy new glasses. Read on to discover seven such signs!

1. It’s Been a While Since Your Last Eye Exam

Regular eye exams are as important to your health as checkups with the doctor or the dentist. These visits ensure that any vision problems can be addressed immediately. They will also detect the early signs of eye-related conditions, such as glaucoma, detached retina, cataracts, or age-related macular degeneration.

The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that adults age 20-40 have an eye exam every five to 15 years. Those 40-65 should get checked every two to four years. Starting at age 65, seniors need to have an eye exam conducted annually.

if you already require vision correction, or if you have a family history of eye disease, a yearly exam is recommended.

2. You Suffer from Frequent Headaches

Have you noticed that you’re popping analgesics more frequently, especially after prolonged periods of reading or computer use? Headaches are an indication that your vision may need to be evaluated.

Everyone gets a headache from time to time, but an increase in their frequency can be a sign that something is amiss.

3. Your Eyes Get Dry or Fatigued Easily

Another health issue that can indicate the need for eyeglasses is eyestrain or fatigue. Again, fatigue and eyestrain are common in people who use computers, gaming systems, or smartphones for a prolonged period. In fact, some 10 million visits to the eye doctoroccur annually as a result of digital screen usage.

Why are computers or other screens so tiring on our eyes? The main reason is that we don’t blink as often when we’re using them. That means eyes get dry faster.

To help keep your eyes moisturized, follow the 20-20-20 rule. Every 20 minutes, look at something that is 20 feet away from your computer screen for 20 seconds. This will help keep your eyes in optimal health even during a full day of computer usage.

It’s important to note that our eyes become naturally drier as we age. Dry eyes are particularly common in post-menopausal women. While artificial tear drops can help, be sure to tell your eye care practitioner about this issue. She can recommend a course of action to alleviate dry eyes.

If your eyes are often red, dry, or itchy, if they cause you pain, or if they just feel plain old tired at the end of each day, eyestrain or fatigue could be to blame.

4. It’s Harder to See At Night

Remember how your grandparents or parents used to complain that they didn’t like to drive at night? As we age, it gets more difficult to see properly in low-light conditions. So you may find yourself avoiding going out at night or straining to see the road ahead.

For the sake of your own safety, as well as that of your fellow drivers, visit an optometrist and get yourself checked out.

5. You Have Trouble Reading

Does it seem like publishers are making the print in books smaller than ever before? Maybe it’s not the books themselves, but your eyes. One of the first signs that it’s time to buy glasses is difficulty reading.

One great feature of both computers and e-readers is that you can enlarge the print. This makes everything easier to read. But there are many times you will not be able to format printed material.

If you find yourself choosing television over the latest James Patterson novel, or getting headaches when you read, schedule an eye exam.

6. You Find Yourself Squinting

Can’t read the ingredient list on a package of granola bars without squinting? Are you struggling to see things clearly? You guessed it — time to buy glasses.

You may be able to get by with a pair of readers from the drugstore, but probably not for long. Readers are essentially magnifying glasses. They may help with simple tasks like reading the newspaper or be able to see a recipe clearly.

However, readers won’t solve the problem if your vision has changed significantly. Neither can they address issues such as astigmatism or the need for progressive lenses. It’s best to have your eyes thoroughly examined by a professional. Then you can buy glasses that are perfectly suited to correct your vision.

7. You Hold Things at Arm’s Length

On the opposite end of the spectrum from squinting, or bringing objects up close to your eye so you can see them clearly, is presbyopia. This is a common condition that makes it difficult to focus on nearby objects. It generally affects people in their mid- to late-40s.

Perhaps you have discovered that it’s necessary to hold menus at arm’s length. Or you may instinctively back up when someone shows you a photograph on their phone.

Make things easier on yourself by having a comprehensive eye exam. You may require prescription lenses to correct your presbyopia. Chances are that once you buy glasses and get used to wearing them, you’ll wonder how you ever made do without them.

Ready to Buy Glasses?

The first step is to schedule an exam with Abba Eye Care’s experienced eye care professionals. We accept many forms of insurance.

While you’re here for your exam, why not browse our extensive selection of eyeglass frames? Choose from a wide variety of designer frames from such well-known fashion names as Jimmy Choo, Marc Jacobs, Juicy Couture, and Prada. Our caring staff can help you choose a pair that is as flattering as it is functional.

Abba Eye Care has many convenient locations, so you will never have to venture far from home to buy glasses. Call or stop in today — your eyes will thank you!