What are Progressive Lenses?

by Jan 5, 2021Glasses

Progressive lenses (also known as “no line bifocals”) are often discussed in optometry offices and among friends. While some individuals love their progressive lenses, others find them difficult to adjust to and do not hesitate to share their experience with others.

What exactly are progressive lenses and why can they be difficult to adjust to? Read on to learn more about how they work and how to be successful when switching to these lenses!

 

What Are Progressive Lenses?

Progressive lenses refer to glasses lenses that provide clarity at various distances from where your eyes are.

The most common example is a progressive lens that allows you to have improved vision in both the distance and at an arm’s length to allow for reading.

Progressive lenses could also be designed for office work to allow for clarity at intermediate computer distance and closer reading.

The hassle of having to switch between distance viewing glasses and reading glasses motivated the development of bifocal lenses, which you may know as the lenses with the line in them.

Over time, a more aesthetically pleasing lens was designed, referred to as a progressive lens. Unlike the traditional bifocal lenses, these lenses have the different zones blended together such that they no longer have the obvious line separating the different lens zones.

 

Who Uses Progressive Lenses?

Traditionally, progressive lenses have been prescribed to patients with presbyopia, referring to a condition in which an individual will have issues reading up close.

This is often due to age-related changes that start to manifest around the late thirties where the natural lens within our eye loses its ability to focus for near, requiring additional reading power to see clearly at this distance.

The simplicity of having glasses that work for various distances is what makes progressive lenses so popular.

In addition, progressive-type lenses can be prescribed to younger individuals, even in childhood. The type of lens is referred to as an anti-fatigue lens that has a smaller reading boost to aid in completing schoolwork and decreasing eye strain.

Are No Line Bifocals Difficult to Get Used To?

The answer to this question varies depending on the patient and multiple factors. The key to success is how you use the zones of the lenses and the movement of your head to compensate.

Look straight ahead for distance viewing and down for reading. This means that the eyes turn downward while the chin stays straight up, still facing forward. Do not turn the head down to view the text but rather turn the eyes.

The higher a prescription, the more difficult it will be to familiarize oneself with how to use this lens. The design of the lens will also make a big difference. Higher quality progressive lenses will have larger areas for viewing distance or near objects.

Our opticians will help you find the best lenses that suit your needs. If you find that you are having issues using your progressive lenses, visit our office for a tutorial and be patient.

It can take a couple weeks to get used to these lenses and the positioning of your head and neck to get the right view, especially if you recently received an updated prescription that varies from your previous glasses.

In the vast majority of patients, progressives become very easy to use after some practice.

 

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Our eye doctors at Nittany Eye Associates excel in the prescription of contact lenses, glasses and various eye diseases. Call us at (814) 234-2015 or schedule an appointment online with one of our highly trained optometrists if you would like to learn more about progressive lenses or other types of bifocals we offer.  Be sure to visit Nittany Eye Associates where we always put the care of you and your family first at our convenient locations in State College, Matilda, Spring Mills, Tyrone, and Lock Haven PA areas.

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