Prescription Reading Glasses

If you have recently turned 40, chances are at your next eye exam you will have a fitting for prescription reading glasses.

Even if you have enjoyed perfect vision in your youth, as we all age, the lens of the eye gets thicker so that it gets harder and harder to focus on objects closer than 18 inches (45 cm) to the eyes.

When you simply cannot hold the newspaper out any farther, you will have to get prescription reading glasses or prescription contacts. Reading glasses are usually the place to start.

Full or half-lenses. Reading glasses can be fit with full or half-lenses. Full lenses in reading glasses set lens in a frame that covers the top and bottom of the lens.

The wearer has vision correction that makes it easy to read materials placed directly in front of the eyes as well as materials placed to the right or left on the desk.

When it's necessary to see across the room or out the window, however, full lenses do not offer any distant vision correction.

Half-lenses, in the Ben Franklin style, do not offer vision correction, either.

However, their placement of just half of a corrective lens into a frame supporting the bottom of the lens allows the wearer simply to look over the lens and take advantage of uncorrected vision to see objects in the distance.

Available without a prescription. Reading glasses with both full and half-lenses are available literally off the rack at many drugstores. You simply choose the lens that allows you to read clearly that's placed in the frames you like.

There is an enormous selection at 5 to 15 per cent of the cost you would pay at the optician's office. But there are several reasons you will probably be better off with prescription reading glasses. Eye exams are essential to ongoing eye health. The first is that the optometrist or ophthalmologist can give you exactly the vision correction you need, not just the best match you can find at the drugstore.

Non-prescription lenses cannot correct for astigmatism, and not correcting for the wavy lines you may see though near-vision only corrective lenses can cause eyestrain and headache.

And you'll simply get more done if you see more clearly. You may actually save money by spending several hundred dollars on the right eyeglasses.

A more important reason to get prescription reading glasses, however, is that you have to see you doctor. Sure, most people who buy non-prescription glasses are just trying to avoid the hassle and expense of an eye exam, and that's not a problem if you are simply getting additional glasses to augment your prescription reading glasses.

There is no reason you should have to have a separate eye exam and get a separate prescription just because you would like to keep reading glasses in your office, in several rooms around the house, in your car, on your boat, in your purse, or in your briefcase.

Eye exams can save your sight. The process of examining your eyes for reading glasses, however, can reveal the earliest, most treatable stages of devastating eye diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy, and macular degeneration.

If you just buy your glasses over the counter and never see the doctor, you may not know you have these conditions until it is too late to save your sight.

Prescription reading glasses offer superior vision correction at higher cost. Make sure you get your first pair of reading glasses after an exam and with a prescription, and then buy your extra pairs online or over the counter.


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