Prescription glasses are like a made-to-measure suit.
Choosing the appropriate lens design is where things can become very confusing. There are many different brands, designs and coatings to choose from. This is where optometrists and optical dispensers excel. Part of their expertise is in matching the best possible lens design to your unique requirements. Sometimes this may mean more than one pair of glasses is required, especially if you work in an office environment.
The perfect pair of glasses is custom made specifically for the individual to maximise both vision and comfort. There are many lens designs that you can choose from, depending on your unique needs.
The most important aspect of eyeglasses is that they allow us to see. After all why do we choose to wear eyeglasses to begin with? Having the right lenses prescribed is the first step towards that perfect pair of glasses. You optometrist will measure your eyes carefully to arrive at the best possible correction for you.
Some types of prescription lenses
These are prescribed either for general use in younger patients (early 40’s or younger) or, in older patients, for vision at one specific focus (distance, for computer (arms length) or for reading).
This lens design is usually reserved for the over-50 age bracket, who need a general pair of eyeglasses that will allow simultaneous vision in all areas. They are very popular as they can be worn most of the time, rather than having to put them on and off all the time. They come in many designs to cater for different frame shapes and working distances. Some people can have difficult adjusting to multifocals, but this is rare if they are fitted properly by an expert, and it tends to settle down with a few days to weeks.
This design now is very popular for office workers, who have minimal distance requirements during the working day, but have a high demand in reading a computer screen and documents.
These lenses are specially shaped to align the images seen by each eye. This avoids double vision or eyestrain in susceptible people. They look just like normal spectacle lenses, although they may look a little thicker at one edge than the other (although this is usually very subtle). During your eye examination, your optometrist will assess your eyes to see if prism is required.
Lens materials and coatings
This is standard on most prescription lenses. Not only does it look a lot nicer cosmetically – because you can see through to your eyes without interference from reflections – it is also more comfortable for glare, including computer use.
This subtle tint is barely visible on your lenses but critically it blocks light from the blue-violet end of the spectrum from entering your eyes. This light penetrates far deeper than UV light and has been implicated in some studies in early development of macular degeneration and other eye disease. It is toxic to your retina. Blue-violet light is emitted from modern screen-based devices including computers, tablets and smart-phones. Blue Blockers are available with or without prescription and are recommended for anyone who spends time on digital devices.