Prescription Reading Glasses vs. Over-the-Counter Readers
If you are over 40, chances are you need reading glasses (or you will soon!). You can purchase these eyeglasses on your own from a local drugstore, or you can buy prescription glasses from an optical store. At River Oaks Family Optometry, we will help you choose the best solution for maximum comfort and ease of vision. Presbyopia doesn't mean you can't go about your daily routine comfortably and easily.
Features of Over-the-Counter Readers
For starters, generic reading glasses (also known as readers) bought over-the-counter are designed especially for presbyopia. This refers to the age-related condition in which your natural eye lens loses flexibility, making it hard to focus on near objects. These spectacles will not address other visual conditions, such as nearsightedness or astigmatism, as they are constructed from magnifying lenses set into eyeglass frames.
Over-the-counter eyeglasses are typically lower priced and lower quality, especially when compared to the advanced lenses and designer frames we provide. The frames tend to be weaker, and the lenses scratch easily.
Readers also have the exact same prescription in each lens. Therefore, if your vision condition isn’t identical in both eyes, then it may be difficult to focus with these generic glasses.
Yet one distinct advantage of drugstore spectacles is their convenience. If you only need reading glasses occasionally, then this may be an ideal solution for your presbyopia. Wearing them for an extended period, such as reading for hours, may cause eye fatigue and headaches. Yet if you only need to put them on to read the fine print at the bottom of a package, then they can be fine for your requirements. You can easily buy a few pairs and store them where you need them most! Keep one pair in your desk drawer and another in your bag.
Features of Prescription Reading Glasses
When we craft prescription eyeglasses for you, we follow a precise vision prescription provided by your eye doctor. To determine this prescription, your eye health and visual acuity will be tested thoroughly. Your reading spectacles will then be custom-made to match the needs of each eye, respectively. In contrast to the display of generic readers in the drugstore, there’s no limit to the range of lens powers available from our optical store.
Lenses made in a prescription laboratory boast higher quality and sharper clarity. The frames are adjusted to suit your face, and the optical center of the lenses is placed in the ideal position you need for comfortable reading.
You will be able to choose the perfect pair of designer frames from our quality collection, and we’ll fit them with the correct lens powers. We’ll also offer you options such as scratch-resistant and anti-glare coatings.
What if I already need glasses? Bifocals vs. Progressive Lenses
If you already use corrective lenses, you need more than single prescription lenses. Typically there are two options; bifocals and progressive lenses.
For decades, the only solution to this problem was bifocals: two lenses with two separate prescriptions within one frame. Often divided by a visible horizontal line, bifocals have the wearer look through the upper portion of the lens for distance vision. When the wearer wants to read or examine something up close, they typically look through the lower portion of the prescription lens.
The Next Generation: Progressive Lenses
The problem with bifocals is that they provide two completely separate, binary lenses. This means that your vision is either completely upclose or distance, with no natural gradation. In essence, bifocals don't provide a natural feel to the way you see. Instead, you have to go back and forward between the two lenses. Mid-range objects become especially difficult to focus on, causing dizziness, headaches, and frustration.
Progressive lenses are very different. Instead of two distinct, binary lenses like you have with bifocals, these lenses work on a gradient to gradually adjust the focus as your eyes move.
Are all Progressive Lenses Equal in Quality?
In short, no. While all progressive lenses take time to get used to, often there are particular problems associated with them. Standard progressives cause various visual distortions, particularly from the side. Objects may appear to "swim" from the side, requiring frequent head turns rather than natural glances to the side.
Hoya Freeform Progressive Lenses
At River Oaks Family Optometry we use an advanced freeform lens from Hoya. These lenses have a much wider power corridor, which means easier and better visual scanning and improved comfort. These lenses also provide superior comfort and ease for both reading AND viewing electronic devices.
Unlike traditional conventional progressive lenses, the Premium Back Surface Progressive lens uses the back surface freeform technology. This places the progressive surface on the back of the lenses, providing wearers a wider field of vision.The Premium Back Surface Progressive lens allows wearers to see clearer at close quarters with lesser eye movement thanks to Hoya Vision’s back surface freeform technology compared to other back surface designs. It is suitable for a modern lifestyle, where you are always on the move in a fast-paced environment.