If a visit to your Ophthalmologist leaves you confused, you are not alone. The doctor explained the problems with your vision but this prescription makes no sense at all. How is it that all these letters and symbols can be transformed into a pair of corrective lenses. Fear not, for all these numbers and symbols will put you on the path to being able to see clearly once again with a pair of eyeglasses.
The numbers and signs on your prescription all have a meaning. Whether you are near or farsighted, is indicated by the sphere. If your problem is distance your sphere will have a plus sign. A minus sign will be used for correction of close vision. Higher numbers indicate a more prominent problem.
Next there will be a cylinder number. Normally written with a minus value, it is the cylinder that indicates the presence of astigmatism. Astigmatism is related to the curve of the cornea and how spherical the lens of the eye is. Without corrective lenses, vision is blurry in the distance.
The axis is where the prescription is to be placed in the lens. 90 or 180 degrees are the usual settings for the axis. When an add value is included this denotes the inclusion of a bifocal for close up or reading vision. Again, the higher the number the more strength the reading lens will have. Pupil distance is the last consideration to be followed being the distance between pupil centers that is measured in millimeters. If your prescription is not centered your vision will not be properly corrected.
All of this is done by the eye doctor but when it comes to having your glasses made, the job is performed by an optician. This is a specially trained person who can read and follow the prescription directions. First, the patient will try on a number of eyeglass frames to find the one they feel is most attractive to their features. With this frame on, the optician will make a number of measurements to ensure that the prescription is properly fitted into your frame.
Glasses have become a fashion statement. Gone are the days of being taunted as ‘four eyes.’ There hundreds of frames to choose from in all different styles, sizes, and colors. If a person should only need a prescription for reading glasses, these are half lenses worn on a decorative chain around the neck until needed.
When it comes to the lens, you even have options there. They can be constructed of plastic or glass. They can be tinted in four different shades. The glass can be transitioned into sunglasses on days where the sun is bright. New grinding techniques make for glasses that are much more flattering to wear. If weight is a problem, there is plastic with titanium frames.
Eyeglasses can take much more punishment than their early predecessors. They can be twisted and bent and pop back into their normal shape. They can be rimless, plastic, wire, and even wood. They can be a statement of simplicity or understated elegance. Some women are known to have many pairs of glasses to suit different occasions. Even with all these choices there are those who will choose to wear contact lenses. The sky is the limit in eye wear today.
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