Help! a few questions about READING glasses....???

Discussion in 'Optometry Archives' started by taylorleesa0, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. taylorleesa0

    taylorleesa0 Guest

    Hi guys...

    I am under the impression when you go to an eye doctor and he
    prescribes you glasses for READING that his prescription will
    correct the vision problem... ie astigmatism, etc.... and of course
    this will result in clearer vision.

    Now... I have also purchased over the counter reading glasses that
    you can get at your neighborhood drugstore or really just about
    anywhere. Now these glasses will improve your reading by simply
    magnifying whatever you're reading.

    Now... although I'm sure correcting the problem is the best way to
    go, I have found that if I try on enough pairs of the OTC glasses I
    can usually find a pair at the correct magnification that will do a
    good job.

    Here are my questions. Can you go to your eye doctor and get the best
    of both worlds? Can he prescribe a pair of glasses for you that will
    BOTH correct the vision defect and also give you some degree of
    MAGNIFICATION as well? Is this possible?

    For whatever reason.... almost all reading glasses prescribed by a
    doctor, although they will make your vision CLEAR, don't address the
    fact that some of us can benifit from some magnification as well. Can
    you have BOTH built into a pair of glasses?


    LEESA ( I )
    taylorleesa0, Mar 9, 2009
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  2. taylorleesa0

    Neil Brooks Guest


    Just tell your eye doctor what it is you want.
    Neil Brooks, Mar 9, 2009
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  3. taylorleesa0

    Dan Abel Guest

    Well, I'm confused now. I'm no whiz at optics, but I thought that a
    pair of +2.00 OTC reading glasses were optically the same as a pair of
    +2.00 reading glasses from an eye doctor.

    Am I missing something?
    Dan Abel, Mar 9, 2009
  4. taylorleesa0

    Neil Brooks Guest

    From the OP's post, I inferred that -- in addition to presbyopia --
    she has refractive error -- say, astigmatism, myopia, hyperopia, or
    some combination of the above.

    Simple enough to put a reading add into a bifocal, or simply to make
    reading glasses that correct all of the above (often referred to as
    "NVO --" Near Vision Only).

    My $0.02.
    Neil Brooks, Mar 9, 2009

  5. Thank you for your candor.

    Aren't there significant differences in manufactured distance
    between optical centers (interocular distance) that some people
    might find annoying (prism), especially at higher powers?

    -- Robert
    Robert Redelmeier, Mar 9, 2009
  6. taylorleesa0

    Salmon Egg Guest

    I am not an eye doctor but I do understand optics.

    You are mixing up several concepts.

    1. Refractive vision correction.
    2. Compensation for age related inability to accommodate.
    3. Magnification.

    An eye doctor can give you a prescription that addresses all of these
    points. He can correct for astigmatism and other problems for the
    individual eyes. Each eye can need a different lens.

    Each lens will have more power than needed for distant vision in order
    to see clearly at a reading distance. You pick it.

    Magnification is set by how close you are willing to read. Thus, If you
    are willing to read at a distance of seven inches rather than 14 inches,
    you will get a magnification increase by a factor of two. You cannot,
    however get a lens that do both. If you get bifocals, you can get
    additional power in the bifocal part for more magnification. You will
    need to hold the work closer.

    You will probably get arguments about whether you get better optical
    quality from a prescription or a drugstore. I will not go there other
    than to say I get the cheapest reading glasses I can get. If you want to
    put them over your distance glasses, it will work optically but will be
    awkward. Remember that drugstore glasses will have the same lens for
    each eye and will not compensate for astigmatism.

    Salmon Egg, Mar 9, 2009
  7. taylorleesa0

    taylorleesa0 Guest

    Hi... Thanks for the replies so far. Here's what I don't quite
    understand. I DO have prescriptions for reading glasses that are
    about 3 years old. I don't know the exact prescription stats... but I
    do know that I am considered farsighted and I have an astigmatism in
    each eye. My prescription reading glasses work very well.

    However... on a recent trip, I forgot to bring my glasses. So I went
    out and looked for a pair of cheap glasses to substitute until I got
    home. I actually went to a dollar store <grin> and picked up a pair
    of glasses for a buck. It listed the power of them to be +1.25.

    Here's the funny thing. They improved my vision just about as good as
    my glasses did. Maybe slightly less... but quite close indeed.
    Now... although these cheapo glasses offered slight magnification,
    they really didn't correct my visual defects of being farsighted and
    having eyes that have astigmatisms.

    How are glasses of this nature able to accomplish this? It didn't
    seem that they affected the size of print of what I was reading very
    much but everything was much, much clearer than with my naked eyes.

    Thanks again.

    LEESA (I)
    taylorleesa0, Mar 9, 2009
  8. taylorleesa0

    Salmon Egg Guest

    I think that you observed correctly. That is why I like dollar stores.
    There would be no correction for astigmatism. Magnification is tied
    closely to the distance at which you can see clearly.

    1.25D glasses will allow someone with no accommodation who can see
    clearly at long distance without glasses to see most clearly at 0.8
    meters. That is not a big change, but everything helps. To get more
    magnification, you might need to double that to 2.50D. Then the same
    person described above would be able to see clearly at half of 0.8
    meters or 0.4 meters. Because you could bring your book closer, your
    magnification will increase by a factor of two and your arms do not have
    to be as long as with 1.25D.

    Essentially, your magnification is going to be determined by how closely
    you can bring your work. Once you decide that, a lens can be chosen that
    provides clear vision at that distance.

    Salmon Egg, Mar 9, 2009
  9. taylorleesa0

    Dan Abel Guest

    Well, actually, that's exactly what is done to correct being farsighted.
    My wife wears a +1.00 for her distance vision. That doesn't help your
    astigmatism, though. However, many people wear glasses for the worst
    case, which usually involves insufficient light. The effect of the
    astigmatism may be lessened just by having sufficent light. This also
    makes it easier for your eyes to focus, even if the power of the lens
    isn't quite right.

    The best thing to do is to ask your eye doctor what you should buy next
    time this happens to you. And write it down!
    Dan Abel, Mar 9, 2009
  10. taylorleesa0

    Mark A Guest

    The correction for farsightedness is a plus lens, just like reading glasses.
    The only thing that a reading lens purchased over the counter will not
    provide is correction for astigmatism (cylinder and axis usually expressed
    as a minus) in addition to the plus (sphere) power. Also, an Rx is accurate
    to the nearest .25 diopter, whereas most over the counter reading lenses are
    only available in 1.00 or .50 diopter increments. Also, on over the counter
    lenses, both sides are the same, whereas with an Rx lens they may be
    slightly different.

    Nearsighted people need a minus lens to help them see at a distance. These
    are not available over-the-counter because they are more likely to be used
    for driving, and to protect the public interest, the government requires
    them to have an Rx for a minus lens to make sure their vision is properly
    Mark A, Mar 10, 2009
  11. taylorleesa0

    taylorleesa0 Guest

    Thanks. I was always under the impression that the numbers you see on
    the glasses on OTCs are referring to the amount of MAGNIFICATION....
    ie 1.0, 1.5,
    2.0 etc... etc...

    Actually... I am not sure if these numbers have a + in front of them
    or not. All I know is that you can get these cheap reading glasses


    LEESA (I)
    taylorleesa0, Mar 10, 2009
  12. taylorleesa0

    paul_0090 Guest

    Are there any "over the counter" or online source that sell reading
    glasses with the trivex or cr39 lenses; or even better, glass for
    a +2.50 diopter?

    Seem like all reading glasses are being sold with polycarbonate lenses;
    did see an online seller that uses acrylic lens tho.
    paul_0090, Apr 6, 2009
  13. taylorleesa0

    Firewalker Guest

    Yes, check out
    If you don't need prescription lenses, just order PLANO lenses with a
    +2.50 add power.
    They have CR-39, and they do do glass lenses, but I'm not sure if they
    do glass for lower scripts like yours.
    The only thing they don't have is Trivex.

    Good Luck,
    -=# Firewalker #=-
    Firewalker, Apr 7, 2009
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