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​Types of Lenses and Vision Problems

Aug 11, 2021


If your vision is not clear, you may have visual problems such as myopia or hyperopia. Glasses can correct these problems and help you have a clear vision. An optometrist or ophthalmologist will do an eye exam to what type of lens is best for you. Depending on your vision problem, you may need to use bifocal or progressive lenses.

What Are Glasses Good For?

Glasses correct vision problems and can help you if you don't have a clear vision from a distance or nearby. Most vision problems are related to how light is focused on the back of the eye, called the retina. The retina is located behind the eye, next to the optic nerve. The lenses in the eye send the light to the retina, which converts it into signals sent to the brain. This process creates the images we see.

How Common Are Vision Problems?

Vision problems are a common occurrence for many people. Eleven (11) million Americans over the age of twelve (12) have vision problems. Healthcare providers can detect eye diseases early and prescribe eyeglasses.

What Vision Problems Do Glasses Correct?

Although glasses cannot correct all vision impairment, they help to correct many problems. Glasses generally correct the following eye conditions.

Myopia (Nearsightedness): People with this disorder can see close objects clearly, and see distant objects blurred.

Hyperopia (Farsightedness): People with this eye disease can see distant objects clearly, and see near objects blurry.

Astigmatism: A deformity problem of the cornea that causes visual impairment or blurred vision.

Presbyopia: The eye begins to lose its ability to focus on nearby objects. This ailment is an age-related problem.

What Kind of Glass Will I Need?

Your doctor decides which type of glasses you should choose according to your eye disease.

Concave lenses correct myopia, convex lenses correct hyperopia, cylinder-shaped lens es correct astigmatism and bifocal or multifocal lenses correct presbyopia.

What Are Single-Vision Lenses?

These lenses help people who have trouble focusing on distant or near objects. Single-vision lenses can correct myopia, hyperopia, and presbyopia problems.

What Are Reading Glasses?

Reading glasses are a type of single-vision lens. They are generally used by people with presbyopia who can see distant objects clearly but have difficulty seeing words while reading. Reading glasses are usually available over-the-counter at a pharmacy or bookstore. However, in order to get more accurate lenses, it is necessary to prefer prescription glasses written by the doctor. Over-the-counter reading glasses will not work if a different prescription has been given for the right and left eyes. For this reason, we recommend that you consult an ophthalmologist before purchasing reading glasses.

What Are Multifocal Lenses?

If you have more than one vision problem, you may need multifocal lenses. These lenses have two or more vision corrective prescriptions. In such a case, the doctor and the patient decide together which lenses should be used. The options available in such a situation are:

Bifocals: This is the most common type of multifocal lens. This lens has two parts. The upper part of the lens helps to see distant objects clearly, while the lower part ensures that near objects are seen perfectly. Bifocals lenses can help people over the age of 40 with presbyopia who have a reduced ability to focus.

Trifocals: These glasses are bifocal lenses with an additional third part. The third section provides a clear view of objects at very close distances.

Progressive: Progressive lenses are curved lenses that enlarge objects the closer to the bottom of the lenses you look. Progressive lenses are similar to bifocals or trifocals, with no visible lines in the lenses. Some people think that progressive lenses cause more impaired vision than other types. This is because more of the area on the lens is used to switch between different types of lenses. Focal portions are much smaller.

Computer Glasses: These multifocal lenses are specially made for people who need to focus on their computer screens. Computer glasses prevent people from experiencing eye strain.

What Materials Are Glasses Made Of?

In the past, eyeglass lenses were made of glass. However, most glasses today are made of plastic. Glass lenses are more resistant to scratches. However, plastic lenses have more advantages than glas s: they are lighter and thinner, more robust, and can be added to the filter that protects the eyes from ultraviolet rays.

What Types of Lenses Are Available?

When choosing lenses, the patient and the doctor decide together. The options offered to patients are as follows:

Polycarbonate Lenses

These lenses are extra resistant to impact. These lenses are ideal for active people. For example, it is one of the most suitable lens options for people who play sports or for children who drop their glasses.

Photochromic and Tinted Lenses

These lenses are usually made of glass or plastic. These lenses transform from clear glass to tinted glass when exposed to sunlight. These lenses contain a tint that filters the blue light emitted from electronic screens. In this way, while the perception of color increases, the eyes are protected from bright light.

High-Index Plastic Lenses

These are suitable lenses for people with a high prescription. This type of lens is generally thinner and lighter than the thick lenses used by people with high eye conditions.

Aspheric Lenses

Unlike conventional lenses, aspheric lenses are produced in a round shape. There are curves on the lens and unlike other lenses, it can be thicker and thinner.

How Can We Care Glasses?

In order to use your glasses without any problems for a long time, you need to take good care of them. It is necessary to store your glasses in a clean, dry environment where they will not be damaged. Water and lint-free cloth should be used when cleaning the glasses.

Who Performs the Eye Examination?

An eye specialist will do an eye exam to determine what kind of glasses you need. A complete eye examination helps to detect eye diseases earlier and to treat them more easily. Eye specialists can be divided into two as follows:


A licensed optometrist performs eye exams and vision tests. They can prescribe prescription glasses and detect eye problems.


An ophthalmologist is a doctor who specializes in eye care. These people can perform surgery to correct eye problems.

What Tests Should I Have Before Buying Glasses?

The following checks are conducted in a sight examination:

Visual Acuity

In order to understand how well the person sees, the person is asked to read a chart from different distances. This test is evaluated out of 20 and if there is no visual defect, 20/20 vision expression is used.

Lens Prescription

People look at an eye chart with a device called a phoropter. Different lenses are available in these devices. The doctor doing the eye exam changes the lenses while the person looks at the eye chart and asks which lens provides the best vision. This eye exam helps the ophthalmologist determine an eyeglass prescription.


The ophthalmologist checks the health of the person's eyes with a bright light.

Side Vision

This test helps the ophthalmologist to detect ailments that the person was not aware of before.

Eye Movement

It is a test that the ophthalmologist does to check the person's eye muscles and make sure that the eyes are in the correct alignment.

Eye Pressure

This test is done to detect glaucoma. The doctor performing this test sends air into the eye lightly and quickly.

Front of Eye

With this test, doctors check whether there are any scars or scratches on the eyelids, cornea, lens and iris with a special microscope.

Retina and Optic Nerve

In this treatment, the doctor uses a retinal scanner to dilate the pupil. With this application, it is checked whether there is damage to the retina and optic nerve.

How Often Should I Have an Eye Examination?

Eye examination should be done regularly every year. However, this number can be increased by the doctor according to the problems in the eye.

How Often Should I Change My Glasses?

Usually, the prescription for glasses is ideal for up to one (1) year. If the doctor does not detect a change in vision during the annual examination, the same glasses can be used for several years. However, if you had high nearsightedness as a child, had presbyopia in middle age, developed cataracts, had surgery or have diabetes, you may need to get a new prescription in less than a year.

When Should I Call My Eye Doctor?

If you feel that your vision is worsening in one or both eyes, it is necessary to make an appointment with an eye specialist. After the examination, the eye specialist decides whether a new pair of glasses is needed. Experts can also provide information about different medical conditions underlying vision impairment. In addition, you should always call your eye doctor if you have an eye infection or injury to your eye.

What Do Glasses Cost?

The cost of glasses varies depending on the type of lenses and the frame you choose. Insurance may cover part of the cost of glasses. For this reason, it is very important to find out what kind of policy you have by talking to your doctor and insurance company before buying glasses.


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