Selecting the Right Glasses
Although many people focus on the shape and size of glasses frames to the exclusion of other factors, it is important to think about the type and quality of lenses.
A thorough optometry exam will identify any deficits in your vision that could be improved with a particular type of lens. Share any questions and concerns, you may have, with your optometrist to find which are the right glasses for you.
The correct pair of glasses perfectly complements your face and seamlessly facilitates your experience of the visual world. When they are not the correct prescription or chosen while in a rush, glasses can be uncomfortable, cause headaches, detract from your appearance, and become a nuisance that distracts from everyday life. A few simple tips can help you choose glasses that look and feel great.
Types of Lenses
Glasses come with a variety of lens types, and manufacturers continue to make advances in lens technology. Currently, most lenses are actually made of plastic, not glass. Plastic tends weigh less and are less damage-prone than the traditional glass lenses.
One of the most popular types of lenses are made of polycarbonate. These lenses are perfect for active individuals or children, because they are impact-resistant and pretty durable. Polycarbonate lenses also block ultraviolet rays, protecting your eyes from sun damage. Those who want further protection from the sun may choose photochromic lenses. These lenses change from clear to a darker tinted shade when exposed to UV light.
If you have a very strong prescription, you may have resigned yourself to thick lenses. But newer high index plastic lenses provide a lighter, thinner lens for strong prescriptions. Aspheric lenses also tend to be thinner and flatter because of their unique surface curvature, which also corrects for minor visual distortions.
Bifocal or Trifocal Lenses
In the past, bifocal lenses were easy to spot by the clear line delineating the two sections of the lens. Today, multifocal lenses — also known as progressive lenses — are indistinguishable from regular lenses. Bifocals are commonly needed by individuals over 40 who have difficulty focusing on near objects, such as reading a book. Trifocal lenses add an additional section to enhance your ability to see objects about an arm’s length away. These objects fall in an intermediate zone that may be challenging to see with bifocal lenses.
After discussing the lens material and your potential need for multifocal lenses, your optometrist can advise you on the need for lens coatings. Many people opt for a scratch-resistant coating, which adds a further layer of protection on the lens. Ultraviolet coating may also be a good choice to prevent sun damage. You may also want to ask your eye doctor about tinted lenses, which can improve the ability to detect contrast or certain colors.
With careful consideration, you can find the perfect pair of glasses to frame your face and improve your vision. Review your options with your optometrist to get a professional opinion about what features are best for you. By making the right choice, your glasses will become an unnoticeable addition to your everyday look.Sources:
Vision Service Plan (2012). Types of lenses.
All About Vision (2012). Eyeglass basics.