This is a process called presbyopia. It’s the main reason the majority of seniors need reading glasses even if they never needed corrective lenses before. Those of us who already need glasses to correct nearsightedness end up in a more complex situation with a variety of solutions. Would you rather use a combination of contacts and reading glasses, bifocals (or trifocals, depending on how much time you spend on the computer), or progressives?
Bifocals are very simple. Within each lens is an area with a proscription that corrects for nearsightedness and a smaller area towards the bottom that corrects for presbyopia. The more severe the presbyopia gets, it might become helpful to add a third prescription in the middle to help with focusing on middle distances, like a computer screen. Triple-lens glasses are called trifocals.
Despite their simplicity, many people have a hard time adjusting to the image jump effect created by combining multiple lenses. People can also be self-conscious about wearing them because our culture associates bifocals with old age.
If the negatives of bifocals outweigh the positives for you and you don’t like the idea of using contacts alongside reading glasses, progressive lenses are a sleek modern option. A progressive lens combines multiple prescriptions into one continuous lens, removing the jarring lines and the obvious look of bifocals. Simply by tilting your head the right way, you’ll be able to see clearly at any distance.
Any prescription change can take a few days to get used to, and that’s especially true of your first pair of progressive lenses. It’s normal to feel uncomfortable wearing them at first, but you can adjust more quickly if you follow these tips:
If you’d like to learn more about how progressive lenses work or if they’re the best option for you, we’d love to discuss it at your next appointment. While you’re here, we can make any adjustments you need to your glasses to ensure the perfect fit.