Progressive lenses are essentially a spectacle lens that contains your three different prescriptions, in one lens. It’s a progression of power from your distance prescription in the top, progressing down the lens to your intermediate prescription or middle distance just below eye level focusing at arm’s length and then progressing to your near vision prescription towards the bottom of the lens. the lenses are blended and the different zones are seamless, so cosmetically they look just like a single vision lens as your vision changes near tasks and the computer can become a struggle and you may find that wearing a progressive lens design is more comfortable and far more convenient than two or three pairs.
They are a different design to Bi-focal lenses, which as the name implies Bi-focal gives you two foci. Normally your Distance and Reading prescription, but this can be Dispensed specifically to satisfy different criteria. You could have your computer prescription in the top and reading in the bottom or your distance driving prescription in the top and intermediate dashboard prescription in the bottom. The need to have different prescriptions to correct different visual tasks is common from when you are in your forties. We think there is some correlation between the need for this type of visual correction and the number of candles on your birthday cake. But we wouldn’t say that!
The term is called Presbyopia, which means “Old Sight”. Basically, as the Birthday candles on the cake increase the eyes ability to change focus by altering the shape of the lens, reduces this function is called Accommodation and it starts to reduce so you have a reduction in the amplitude of your accommodation and as a result, your function to see clearly at near tasks reduces .
If you are new to Progressive Lenses, it is normal for you to have an adaption period. Like most things in life, some people assimilate changes more quickly.
Every Progressive lens is designed on a similar optical principal by creating a “Progressive Corridor” of vision which is calculated from your eye position within the specific frame dimensions which you were guided in selecting by The Dispensing Optician or a trained Optical Assistant.
This zone is where your optimum vision is calculated. Your prescription in the lens is “progressive” hence the generic term. There is a myriad of industry names and commonly used terms including Varifocals and Multifocals.
Your distance prescription in the top of the lens slowly progresses downward through the intermediate vision zone (arms length) to your reading zone in the bottom area of the lens.
Frequent Observations By Some Patients
- “Skew and Sway” in your vision
- Loss of clarity when looking to the far side of your lenses
- A disoriented feeling when in a dynamic situation e.g. walking, dancing and cycling
- Raising your head upward to obtain sharper vision at a desktop computer
The most up to date sophisticated lens designs, virtually eliminate this unwanted phenomenon. So far there isn’t an Ophthalmic Laboratory that has been able to defy The Laws of Physics and Mathematics, but they are getting very close to creating Progressive Lens designs which provide virtually no peripheral compromises.
Initially, you will need to adapt to the difference in your peripheral vision and will normally require slight changes in your horizontal head and eye movements. Adaptation to your new lens Progressive Lenses will increase with time as you become more accustomed to your new glasses.
- Do not interchange between your old and new spectacles
- Wear your new prescription constantly throughout the day
- The fit and adjustment of your new Progressive spectacles is key to your adaption
- Wear your new glasses at the position the Dispensing Optician has set them. Some people habitually put their glasses in an arbitrary position on their face, especially if previously they were used to wearing single vision reading spectacles.
- Point your nose at the print and gradually raise your chin up, when you want to read.
We are here to guide you through it and most people adapt very readily and join the many millions of progressive lens wearers around the world who wear their Progressive glasses without a second thought. For most people, the adaptation period will only last a few hours. Some individuals may need several days or even weeks before they feel completely comfortable. It is important to note that everybody is different and will have different visual experiences, especially with Progressive lenses.
The fitting of your Progressive spectacles is vital to your successful adaption. It is key to ensuring you are getting the optimum vision.
The frame and lenses are an optical marriage requiring a carefully selected suitable frame which makes allowances for the parameters of Progressive Lenses. This selection is the starting point.
If your new progressive spectacles aren’t fitting quite right or they keep slipping down please drop in so we can readjust them by one of our Dispensing Opticians, or trained Optical staff.
If you have been wearing Progressives for several weeks or longer and your vision feels uncomfortable in any way, please call into the practice and have a chat with us. There are a small percentage of people who simply just can not adapt to Progressive Lenses, they are not for everyone and if that is the case it’s not the end of the world.
At our Practice, we have a policy that at no extra cost we will find a different optical solution to satisfy your visual criteria where technically possible.