We get asked questions all of the time, such as, “Can you improve eyesight naturally without glasses?” or “Is staring at a computer for too long bad for your vision?” There is a slew of eyesight beliefs and many just aren’t correct. We’ll address seven common eyesight myths to separate fact from fiction.
1. MYTH: THERE ARE NATURAL WAYS TO IMPROVE EYESIGHT WITHOUT CONTACT LENSES OR GLASSES.
False. When debunking eyesight myths, this one usually comes first on the list. So many of us wish for a way to stop eyes from getting worse or to improve eyesight naturally. The truth is, vision tends to worsen with age and nothing will make you see more clearly if you need glasses or contact lenses.
The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) studied whether or not techniques like massage, muscle relaxation, supplements, and eye exercises could improve eyesight without glasses. When the study participants’ the vision was tested there was no change. Though some reported their nearsightedness had improved, the AAO said it was a placebo effect. The organization also researched whether acupuncture improved eyesight and concluded there was not enough evidence to support the claim.
2. MYTH: STARING AT A COMPUTER OR TV FOR TOO LONG WILL RUIN YOUR VISION.
True and false. Sitting extremely close to the television or staring at a computer screen for hours on end without a break isn’t great for your eyes. The close range can lead to eyestrain. In addition, staring without blinking, which is common when using a computer, can cause blurred vision, headaches, discomfort and dry eye. A study published in Ophthalmic and Physiological Optics found that 64% to 90% of computer users experienced the aforementioned symptoms. Follow the 20-20-20 rule, which states you should look 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
While some of these effects don’t cause long term damage, some new studies have found that the blue light (visible light that is close to UV on the light spectrum) emitted from devices such as tablets, smartphones and computer screens, can eventually lead to conditions like age-related macular degeneration. Crizal® Prevencia™, a lens created by Essilor, features a coating that protects the eyes from blue light. I use it myself and have noticed a huge improvement.
3. MYTH: WEARING GLASSES OR CONTACT LENSES WILL MAKE YOUR VISION WORSE OVER TIME AND LEAVE YOU DEPENDENT ON THEM.
False. Wearing glasses or contacts in your correct prescription will not cause your eyesight to deteriorate. The only reason you’re dependent on them is that you need them to see! People’s vision worsens as they get older and an individual who needed one prescription at the age of 20 will likely need a stronger prescription at the age of 60, regardless of whether or not they have used any form of vision correction.
This fallacy is so widespread, that for years, people thought children with myopia, or nearsightedness should be given weaker glasses to slow down the progression and prevent dependence on eyeglasses. A 2002 study divided 94 children ages nine to 14 into two groups. The first group wore the correct eyeglass prescription while the other group wore ones that were too weak. Those who wore the weaker glasses actually experienced a slightly greater decline in eyesight.
4. MYTH: READING TOO MUCH FINE PRINT OR IN DIM LIGHT WILL HARM YOUR VISION.
False. This age-old myth is similar to the belief that staring at a computer or sitting too close to the TV will harm vision. Reading fine print can potentially cause eyestrain as can reading in low light because it makes it hard to focus. However, it’s not permanent. To avoid tired, dry eyes, try to position the light so that it hits the page directly and take breaks when staring at fine print. You’ll be able to see more clearly and comfortably.
5. MYTH: EATING CARROTS IS GOOD FOR YOUR EYESIGHT.
True and false. Your diet plays a role in healthy eyes and vision. Carrots are a good source of vitamin A and a vitamin A deficiency can cause vision to deteriorate. While good nutrition, which also includes fruits and dark leafy greens that have even higher concentrations of antioxidants, can help ward off macular degeneration and cataracts, it won’t fix basic vision issues and will not magically give you 20/20 vision. You’ll still have to wear glasses if you need them.
6. MYTH: NOTHING WILL HELP PREVENT VISION LOSS.
False. Yes, improving eyesight without glasses isn’t realistic when it comes to regular nearsightedness and farsightedness. But, vision loss from glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy can be caught early and treated or even avoided with regular eye exams and a healthy diet and lifestyle. Issues like cataracts can be fixed. In addition, eye injuries, which can lead to vision loss, are easily preventable if you follow the correct safety precautions.
Now that you’re armed with information and have the facts about the most common eyesight myths, it’s time to really improve your vision. How? With glasses or contact lenses in the correct prescription. Stop by the Spectacle Shoppe in Vancouver or visit us online. We’ll help you find spectacles so flattering or contact lenses so comfortable, you won’t even mind wearing them.
You walk into Footlocker for a pair of Nike running shoes and the price tag is too good to be true. You take a shoe out of the box and realize it doesn’t have laces or insoles, in fact the technology that makes it a Nike shoe is being sold separately. The sales associate informs you that you’ll have to pay for those extras.
You think it sounds crazy because you buy Nikes not just for the look but also for the features that helps you perform better. What is true about footwear is true about eyewear. Great eyewear needs to look good and help you perform better too.
WHY DO SO MANY OPTICAL STORES OPERATE ON TOO-GOOD-TO-BE-TRUE PRICES?
At the Spectacle Shoppe we know you are getting SPIFFED. It sounds like a bad word – we’ll let you decide.
SPIFFS are add-ons to your eyewear, also known as upsells that benefit the salesperson because they receive financial incentives for your purchase. Your eyewear technician is taught a sales strategy to offer you a “Good,” “Better” and “Best” option. A reliable and honest optical shop will set the baseline, or the “Good” option, to include the add-ons that are absolutely essential for optimal vision. If an eyewear technician works under a SPIFF system, you receive the too-good-to-be-true option, like the shoe without the laces, insole, and technology. The technician offers you the eyewear add-ons for a price, part of which she will pocket as a reward.
AT THE SPECTACLE SHOPPE, WE DO NOT SPIFF.
You deserve to see clearly. The necessary eyewear features are always part of Spectacle Shoppe experience. While specific lenses and coatings are a must, others are accessories and the need for them depends on your lifestyle. Here is the truth about three eyeglass coatings and three lenses you need to know before you purchase your next pair of glasses.
1. DO I NEED HIGH INDEX LENSES?
Yes, but only if you have a strong prescription because high index lenses are thinner, add comfort and are more aesthetically pleasing than traditional thick lenses. A strong prescription is considered to be +/-3.00 D or more.
2. DO I NEED ANTI-SCRATCH COATING?
Yes. The anti-scratch coating is necessary because scratches are common. You purchase glasses to optimize how you see the world – we do not want you to see the world through scratches and we hope you feel the same way. Beware of optical shops that offer anti-scratch coating as a SPIFF.
3. DO I NEED UV COATING?
Probably not. Any lens and any coating will greatly reduce the amount of UV light your eyes are exposed to, so there is some UV protection built-in. We’re huge fans of Transitions and definitely lean toward that recommendation to ward off UV light. However, if you don’t have Transitions, we’ll typically suggest clip-on sunglasses or regular sunglasses that protect your eyes from long-term sun damage as opposed to a UV coating.
4. DO I NEED ANTI-GLARE/ANTI-REFLECTIVE COATING?
Yes. Your eyewear is meant to optimize your eyesight and glare does not support the mission. Anti-glare/anti-reflective coating enhances your quality of vision especially for driving at night. Bonus: With an anti-glare/anti-reflective coating people will see your eyes and not their own reflection in your glasses. At Spectacle Shoppe, anti-glare/anti-reflective is a must.
5. DO I NEED TRANSITION LENSES?
Maybe. What are your lifestyle needs? If you find yourself moving from an indoor space to an outdoor space multiple times in a given day and you don’t want the hassle of changing your eyewear, Transitions are extremely convenient. At Spectacle Shoppe we love Transition Lenses because it’s an all-in-one option that eliminates the need for separate glasses and sunglasses and they provide 100% UV protection. See our post on the Pros and Cons of Transitions Lenses.
6. DO I NEED POLARIZED SUNGLASS LENSES?
Maybe. Do you play outdoor sports or drive frequently during the day? Polarized sunglass lenses have a special filter that blocks out intense reflected light to reduce glare. However, if you operate heavy outdoor equipment that requires you to view an LCD screen, polarized sunglass lenses make it difficult to see the images.
At the Spectacle Shoppe, we do not SPIFF. The next time you want to buy eyewear that helps you see the world at its best, visit our Vancouver optical store. We know that finding the perfect pair of glasses feels like climbing the Grouse Grind. Our job is to remove the grind.
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Everyone's face has a slightly different shape, but in general face, the shapes fall into four main categories. Depending on your face shape, certain glasses shapes will look better than others. We've come up with this handy info graphic to help you decide:
Glasses Shapes for Face Types - An infographic by the team at Glasses Shapes for Face Types
Finding glasses to suit your face is a must, as your frames play a big role in your overall look. Different glasses shapes highlight or downplay certain features. When searching for a new pair of spectacles, the vast array of choices can be overwhelming. Therefore, we've created a handy guide for determining the best glasses for your face shape.
While everyone has unique attributes and most people will never fit one standard, there are several basic face shapes. They are most commonly divided into the following categories: Round, Square, Oval, Heart.
Eyeglasses for Round Faces: Softer feats and circular shape characterize a round face. The length and width of the face are about equal. The jawline tends to be rounded. Structured, square, or rectangular frames will create the illusion of angles. Slightly upswept corners work too as they will narrow the face a bit.
Eyeglasses for Square Faces: If you have a square face your features are angular and strong. Your forehead, jaw, and cheekbones are approximately the same width and your jawline is harp and well-defined. Go for frames that are wider than your cheekbones for balance. Round and oval frames will soften your face. Don't be afraid to rock the cat-eye frames either.
Eyeglasses for Oval Faces: Oval faces are defined by balanced features. The length of the face is about one and a half times the width. The chin is slightly narrower than the hairline. The oval is the most versatile shape in this face shape guide. While you're lucky enough to be able to get away with eyeglasses, maintain balance with upswept, square, and rectangle shapes. Oversized styles will also complement your features.
Eyeglasses for Heart Shaped Faces: In a heart-shaped face, the cheeks are slightly wider than the forehead and the forehead is significantly wider than the jawline. The chin is sometimes pointed. Wayfarer, oval and round shapes can help bring the widths into harmony. Rimless styles also look stunning.
Anyone who’s had the misfortune of wearing an ill-fitting pair of glasses knows how annoying it can be. Finding glasses that fit and look good are like finding the perfect pair of jeans and just like jeans, it’s not one-size-fits-all. When we help our customers find glasses in Vancouver, we take multiple measurements and factors into account, such as the nose bridge measurement. Bridge width is the distance between the lenses from inside of the rim across the frame. Since incorrect bridge fit is a common issue (ahem online optical retailers!), The Spectacle Shoppe is here to delve into it for you.
BRIDGE WIDTH MEASUREMENT
So first, how should glasses sit on the nose? They should fit securely on the bridge with no pinching. You should be able to bend over, wiggle your head from side to side, and basically prance around without those babies falling off or sliding up and down. If the bridge is too small, your glasses will be situated overly high on your nose, plus they’ll pinch. If the bridge is too large, the frames will slide down constantly.
Eyeglass frame measurements consist of three numbers in a format like 55-16-140. That middle number is the bridge width. As we said before, this number is the distance between the lenses and it ranges from 14 to 24. If your nose is narrow or your eyes are close together you’ll want a lower number, such as 14mm to 18mm. If your nose is wider or your eyes are set further apart, aim for 18mm or higher. Those who are virtually bridgeless sometimes do best with metal frames as most feature adjustable nose pads. It’s important to note that just because your last pair had a 16mm measurement, it doesn’t mean it will work every time since the depth of the lens and bridge design affect the fit.
THE SHAPE AND POSITION OF THE NOSE BRIDGE AFFECTS THE FIT
If you’ve ever spent an afternoon trying on eyeglasses, you’re probably well aware that not all frame styles will be flattering or comfortable on you regardless of how snugly they fit on your nose. The shape and position of the nose bridge can make or break the fit and look as well. When eyeing up frames, note where the bridge is located in relation to the brow line. If you have a high nose bridge (above your pupils) you’ll want to go for frames with a bridge that is in line with or close to the brow line. If you have a low nose bridge (at or below your pupils), frames with a bridge below the brow line and those with curved brow lines will look fantastic.
What do you do if your glasses are irritating the bridge of the nose? There are a few ways to make your spectacles more comfortable until you have time to visit one of our Kerrisdale opticians for a professional fitting.
If your glasses come with adjustable nose pads, get to work! Gently moving them closer together with needle-nose pliers will make the bridge narrower and will stop them from sliding down your face. Widen the nose pads if the frames are pinching or sitting too high. If your glasses don’t have this wonderful feature, there are adhesive and screw-on nose pads you can buy to place on your frames.
If this doesn’t work, bring them into our Vancouver optical store and we’ll take a look. We always encourage customers to try on frames in the store, as professional measurements and adjustments can make all of the difference. Stop by The Spectacle Shoppe in Kerrisdale today for sunglasses or eyeglasses that look stunning, feel great, and hug all of the right places, nose bridge included.
Getting your child to wear glasses can be like getting them to eat broccoli, brush their teeth, or do pretty much anything that’s good for them. However, while it may be challenging, it doesn’t have to turn into a constant battle and it’s certainly not impossible. Kids are curious and they want to see clearly so when they realize glasses help them to do just that, they often overcome their reluctance. It tends to be a matter of getting a child used to wearing their glasses and heaping on the positive reinforcement. Based on our experience as Vancouver opticians, we’ve compiled the tactics that have worked for our customers. By tailoring these suggestions to fit your child’s age and personality, you’ll have your kid rocking their eyewear in no time.
THE LEAD-UP: PREPARING YOUR CHILD TO WEAR GLASSES
So you received the news that your child is nearsighted or farsighted. Now is the time to start laying the groundwork so your child experiences an easy transition into wearing spectacles. You’ll want to sit down with your little one and explain the benefits of wearing glasses and why they’re important. Reassure them that it’s completely normal and acknowledge that they may feel strange at first but they’ll get used to their glasses. Give them the opportunity to ask questions. Here are some other ideas to incorporate into the warm-up period:
- Point out family members wearing glasses or even people on television, in advertisements or in the movies. Bonus points if you can identify some bespectacled celebrities. Make wearing glasses seem “cool.”
- Ask your child who their favorite singers, actors, and athletes are. Hopefully, some of them will have less than stellar vision. Put together a collage of their favorite icons wearing glasses and hang it in their room.
- If you or another family member wears glasses, make a bit show of donning them while doing important tasks. Younger kids in particular love being just like mom or dad.
CHOOSING YOUR CHILD'S EYEGLASSES
Depending on how old your child is, allowing them to get involved in choosing their own glasses can go a long way in getting them to actually wear them. There are tons of kid-friendly, colorful frames available. Make the trip to the optical store exciting. Give them ample time to try on different pairs and maybe even offer a reward at the end of the excursion. You’ll also want to:
- Ensure a proper fit. If the glasses aren’t comfortable, your child probably will be extremely resistant to putting them on. At The Spectacle Shoppe in Kerrisdale, we take measurements, including the bridge measurement, and offer up frames that are suited to the child’s face shape. Something lightweight that stays put and doesn’t slide around tends to work best.
- Peer acceptance is important. Try to steer your child towards a style similar to what their friends and classmates are wearing.
- Since little ones grow fast, keep in mind you might have to stop at the optical store to have them adjusted periodically to maintain a comfy fit.
ENCOURAGING YOUR CHILD TO REGULARLY WEAR THEIR GLASSES
You found the perfect pair but your child doesn’t want to wear their glasses. Don’t allow it to escalate into a power struggle. Be patient. If they take their glasses off, firmly but nicely put them back on. It can take a few weeks for glasses-wearing to become a daily part of life but these suggestions can help
- Start slowly. Get your child to wear their glasses for short bursts of time and build up gradually until they’re wearing them as much as necessary.
- Have your little ones put their glasses on in front of the mirror so they can see themselves wearing them. Kids tend to like their own reflection.
- Pile on the praise. When your child wears their glasses, compliment them, and make them feel good about it. Put their glasses on when they’re doing something enjoyable so your child can associate wearing them with positive experiences. It can be especially beneficial if it’s an activity for which glasses are needed, such as reading a picture book, drawing, or watching movies.
- Get into a routine. Have your child put on their glasses first thing in the morning and take them off at bedtime.
- Have teachers and sitters to get in on the action. Let them know your child should be wearing the spectacles throughout the day and ask them to keep the positive reinforcement going.
If your child still won’t wear their glasses after enacting these tips, don’t panic. It might just take some time and every kid is different. The Spectacle Shoppe offers a variety of children’s glasses in Vancouver. Check out our selection or stop by the store to find the perfect frames for your little one.
Learn how Transition Lenses can help you see things the way they were meant to be seen. If you have poor vision and opt for glasses, you know the danger inherent in taking them off. Your poor specs end up lost or you’re walking into walls. When the sun is shining, this can be a problem. You’re either blinded by the light or constantly switching between glasses and prescription sunglasses.
To combat this conundrum, many people opt for photochromic lenses, also known as Transitions lenses. The lenses adjust to changes in light to optimize eyesight. When you’re exposed to ultraviolet light, the lenses darken to resemble sunglasses. When you return indoors and at night, the lenses revert back to their original clear state. Because the lenses only darken in response to the short wave lengths in sunlight, you don’t have to worry about artificial indoor light triggering the darkening effect at inopportune times. If you’re debating about purchasing transition lenses, read on for our list of pros and cons. But first watch this video to give you a sense of how Transition Lenses work
TRANSITION LENSES PROS
There are a lot of benefits with transition lenses, here are our favorite:
- Since the lenses automatically adapt to light conditions, they reduce eye strain and fatigue indoors and squinting in sunlight. The rapidly changing lenses can also lessen glare by regulating the amount of natural light you are exposed to. The degree of darkening depends upon the amount of light. You’ll never be stuck with uncomfortable shades that let too much or too little light in.
- Transitions lenses darken within a mere 30 seconds and turn clear again just as fast. They maintain about 5-percent residual tint when indoors.
- Light sensitivity is reduced, because the lenses protect the eye from harmful UV rays. Reducing exposure to UV rays lowers the risk of cataracts and other age-related eye issues. The level of protection adjusts itself depending on the needs of your eyes.
- This lens is available in brown and gray variable tints to suit your personal style.
- They’re also available in most lightweight lens materials and can apply to all forms of lenses, such as single, bifocal, and progressive lenses.
- The lenses can save you money as you don’t need to buy separate prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses. Your vision will be crisper and colors will appear more vivid in sunlight.
- At the Spectacle Shoppe we strongly promote transitions lenses for situations where you are indoors and outdoors within minutes, such as window shopping or having lunch on an outdoor patio. You won’t need to do the sunglasses-eyeglasses shuffle, which inevitably results in forgetting your spectacles somewhere.
- Transitions lenses are ideal for children who have difficulty juggling more than one pair of lenses. Since eye damage results from your lifetime exposure to UV rays, protecting children while they are young can ward off problems in the future.
TRANSITION LENSES CONS
There aren’t too many reasons not to purchase transitions lenses. However, for the sake of argument here are a few:
They don’t work in a car because the windshield blocks the UV rays that are necessary to initiate the lenses’ darkening mechanism. However, some manufacturers currently have car-friendly lenses in the works. If you own a convertible you can ignore this point.
You may have to take off your glasses for outdoor photos. Since the lenses darken as soon as you walk outside, your eyes will be obscured in pictures. If you’re trying to cultivate the rock star look, you can add this to the pro column.
FIND TRANSITION LENSES IN VANCOUVER
Whether you think Transition Lenses will work for you or would rather stick with your standard lenses, stop by the Spectacle Shoppe in Vancouver for expert care and advice. We specialize in glasses, sunglasses, contact lenses, and eyewear accessories. For a worry-free online shopping experience, visit spectacleshop.ca.
Sunglasses aren’t just a summer staple. In fact, optometrists recommend wearing sunglasses year-round for optimal eye health. Tom Cruise and Audrey Hepburn were on to something. Not all lenses are created equal, however. Polarized lenses offer a host of advantages that should be considered when purchasing eyewear.
WHAT ARE POLARIZED LENSES?
When sunlight is reflected off of water, snow, windshields, passing cars, and other bright surfaces, it causes visual noise or that pesky glare. Light travels in all directions and standard sunglasses filter light equally, yet polarized lenses filter the light selectively and absorb light waves from various angles, while also protecting against harmful UV rays.
The reflections from horizontal surfaces are blocked by the lens molecules and light enters the eye vertically. You only see the real image because the interfering glare is diminished. For example, you’re enjoying a sunny afternoon on a fishing excursion. When you look down at the water, you see the sky, trees, and other surroundings reflected off of the surface, making it extremely difficult to actually see into the water. If you’re wearing polarized lenses, these reflections are blocked. Instead of staring at your own face mirrored in the water, you can view what’s under the water.
The sun light reflected by any surface, for example, while driving, walking on the beach, or skiing on the mountains, is polarized light.
Polarized lenses block the blinding glare that bounces off horizontal surfaces, for reduced eye strain and great comfort.
TYPES OF POLARIZED LENSES:
- .75 mm Polarized Lenses
Made from extremely thin film, .75 mm lenses are perfect for the casual wearer, as they’re not as resistant to breakage.
- 1.1 mm Polarized Lenses
These lenses are made with thicker sheets of film. While they have the same properties as their thinner counterparts and aren’t any stronger when it comes to nixing glare, they have more resistance to impact. If you’ll be wearing your shades while playing sports or just have a propensity for dropping things, these are a better bet.
Polarized glass lenses offer the highest standard of polarization, photochromic qualities, and scratch resistance. The price tends to be a little higher for glass lenses as opposed to plastic.
- Polycarbonate (plastic)
Though plastic lenses may scratch more easily and might not have the same optical quality as glass lenses, they are lighter and can be more comfortable. They’re also extremely durable and less prone to breakage. They typically cost less than glass lenses.
BENEFITS OF POLARIZED LENSES:
Polarized lenses reduce glare so you don’t have to worry about being blinded on the road when that silver sports car goes zipping by. You will be able to see clearer images while reducing eye strain and fatigue. This makes activities, such as driving, much safer. Glare can be extremely uncomfortable for those who already have vision problems or are prone to migraines. Polarized lenses eliminate this issue. No more squinting! Polarized lenses with full UV ray protection, keep your eyes safe from the damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet light. UV rays can harm the eyes’ lenses and corneas, boost the odds of suffering from cataracts down the road, can cause photokeratitis, a corneal sunburn often referred to as snow blindness, and ravage the thin, fragile skin of the eye area. Polarized lenses preserve the health of your eyes.
- Improved Vision
With the glare filtered out, you see whatever is actually there and aren’t distracted by reflections. Polarized lenses are like the superheroes of sunglasses. Colors are purer, details are precise, contrast is sharper, and your surroundings are crisper and clearer when wearing polarized sunglasses, hence the enduring popularity of Ray Ban shades.
Anyone who’s squinted their way through a drive trying to make out objects that were distorted by a glare knows that the eyes get tired, irritated, red, and strained. Plus, this can lead to a headache. Polarized lenses make it possible to frolic in the sun and around any surface without having to compromise your visual comfort.
ARE POLARIZED LENSES FOR ME?
Those who engage in outdoor sports drive frequently, or just want to reduce glare, will find polarized lenses better suited to their sun protection needs. There are a few cases when you should not wear polarized lenses. Polarized sunglasses make it difficult to see images on an LCD screen so those who rely on an LCD screen, such as operators of certain heavy equipment and pilots, shouldn’t wear them in these instances. In addition, polarized sunglasses are not recommended for night driving or for downhill skiing if you have difficulty distinguishing between regular snow and icy patches when reflections are absorbed. Polarized lenses come in prescription and non-prescription form. Even if you wear bifocals, you will be able to take advantage of these lenses. Your eyewear professional can point you in the right direction.
FIND POLARIZED LENSES IN VANCOUVER
Whether you’re interested in polarized lenses or feel more comfortable with regular sunglasses, the Spectacle Shoppe in Vancouver offers expert care and advice. Glasses, sunglasses, contact lenses, and eyewear accessories are our specialties. Stop by the Spectacle Shoppe today or visit spectacleshop.ca for worry-free online shopping.
- .75 mm Polarized Lenses
Hello, my bespectacled friends. A lot of people visit our store wondering why their glasses pinch, sit crooked on their face, slide off, or even feel off-center. These are all symptoms of the dreaded improperly fitted glasses. But don’t reach for the tape or try to bend your glasses into shape just yet. We are going to solve five common issues associated with improperly fitted glasses.
PROBLEM 1: SLIP AND SLIDE SPECTACLES
One minute you’re lost in your daily newspaper and the next minute everything is a blur. This frustrating issue is typically caused by the temples not sufficiently curving behind the ears, the nose pads on metal frames not being fitted to suit the client’s unique bridge shape, or in some cases, the frame is just too tight against the side of the head forcing the glasses forward. I have some quick fixes to ensure your glasses stay put.
Solution: The most common method of addressing this problem is heating the temples, which are the part of the glasses that curve around the ears. By heating the temples you can manipulate the glasses safely without breaking them. After applying a comfortable degree of heat, the temples can be bent down and curved to the shape of the head behind the ears. Another tactic is using needle-nose pliers to gently bring in the nose pads. Applying light pressure and steady movements, as jerky movements are a recipe for broken glasses, they can then be contoured to fit the topography of the nose. If the two previous options don’t work for you, there’s no need to toss those glasses.
Have no fear, we have another tried and true quick fix. Frames that are too tight can also cause slipping. To remedy this scenario, the hinge joints that connect to the temples need to be filed so that the temples are at a 120-degree angle. The ends of the temples can then be flared back in to contour to the back of the head.
PROBLEM 2: CROOKED FRAMES
Crooked frames are reminiscent of a mad scientist. But there are ways to get your frames straight once more. Crooked glasses often occur when the temples aren’t parallel to each other, your ears are at different levels (don’t worry this is normal), or the right side of the frame is not in alignment with the left side of the frame. If you place your glasses upside down on a flat table you can see if the alignment has gone awry.
Solution: One way to set your spectacles straight is to gently bend the hinge in a downward or upward motion, depending on the type of misalignment. Do this slowly to avoid damaging your frames. Heating the bridge makes the glasses much easier to work with. Once the bridge is malleable, the offending side of the frame needs to be rotated to match the other side. Symmetry once more!
PROBLEM 3: PINCHING FRAMES
Nothing is worse than tight-fitting glasses that pinch and dig into the skull. If this is the case, breathe a sigh of relief because you may have found the source of your recent headaches. When the frame was chosen is too small, the bend behind the ears starts before the earlobe or the temples are not contoured, which is why they dig into the head.
Solution: As we discussed before, the hinge joints may need to be filed so that the temples are at 120 degrees. The ends of the temples are then flared back in again to fit the sides of the head. If the temples are either too short or too long, the heating method is sometimes used to readjust the position of the temples. The bridge width on frames with nose pads are often easier to fix. You can loosen the nose pads for optimal comfort. If you have a chronic issue with all frames feeling tight, consider a pair of glasses with spring hinges.
PROBLEM 4: OFF-CENTERED LENSES
Off-centered lenses can leave you wondering if someone slipped something into your morning coffee. Your vision and depth perception will be skewed, which can cause headaches and discomfort. When lenses are off-center you aren’t able to see through the optical center of your lenses. This can be disorienting and create less than perfect vision. Off-centered lenses occur when the lenses are edged incorrectly or the measurements aren’t taken properly. The optician not only has to measure the horizontal position of the distance between the pupils but should also inquire as to how the client intends to use the glasses. They must then institute this knowledge as well when determining the horizontal position.
Solution: Unfortunately, the only remedy to this problem is to have new lenses made. This is a good time to check out your warranty.
PROBLEM 5: OVER OR UNDERSIZED EYEWEAR
And last but not least, the bane of glasses wearers everywhere: Over or undersized eyewear. If a frame is sold to a client that is too small or too large, this is typical because the measurements are off or the frames just don’t fit the anatomy of the face. This can cause several of the problems we’ve discussed in this tutorial, such as the temples digging into the skull and sliding frames.
Solution: For comfort and superhero vision, it’s best to have new eyeglasses made or at least have the lenses edged down and placed into a smaller frame. You can even have the lenses inserted into a frame with a larger bridge and temple extensions to increase the overall width. Plus, properly sized eyewear is flattering and there is nothing like a spectacular pair of spectacles. While these solutions can help you fix your glasses, the best solution is finding that perfect pair of glasses the first time. Well crafted, quality glasses look and feel fantastic. Relying on professionals to take proper measurements and help you find frames suited to your face will eliminate many of the common issues associated with eyewear.
Swing by The Spectacle Shoppe in the heart of Kerrisdale for expert care and advice. Whether you are looking for eyeglass frames, sunglasses, contact lenses, or eyewear accessories, we are your one-stop-shop for the perfect fit. Reading this from afar? Visit, spectacleshoppe.ca and shop our selection online worry-free. Enjoy your comfortable glasses, especially now that you have the information you need to be spectacles adjusting wizard.
As a Licensed Optician I love interacting one-on-one with clients. One of the most common complaints that I hear about is dry eyes from contact lens wear.
I've got a few handy tips to help with this problem, but in order to get there, I need to first tell you about the composition of tears and the role tears play in eye health.
Tears are made up of 3 layers: lipid, aqueous, and mucin. These 3 layers each have a part to play in preventing dry eye. The lipid (fatty) layer prevents evaporation. The aqueous or lacrimal layer makes up most of the volume of the tear film. This layer carries nutrients, washes away unwanted or dangerous bacteria or foreign objects. The mucin layer is the glue holding the tears to the cornea. If there is a problem with any of these layers which prevents optimal functioning then you end up with dry eyes.
When I fit contacts, one of the key points to a good fit is good tear flow. I also need to make sure that there is good lens movement, this will ensure that the lens won’t inhibit tear flow over time. Without these it is unlikely that my client will be comfortable. It’s also really important to be aware of client’s history as they can have a big impact on comfort as it relates to dry eyes. Some key information includes: age, medications, environmental factors (a/c or heating systems, dry climates, smoke or dust), hormone fluctuations, blinking problems and diseases can all be problematic. Another way discomfort can arise is when contacts aren’t cared for properly.
Deposits and over wear can lead to discomfort which people interpret as dry eyes. Our eyes don’t have specific receptors to help us differentiate what is causing discomfort so what may feel like dry eyes can actually be caused by discomfort. There are a few variations in the way contacts are manufactured. High water lenses sound like they would be comfortable but one issue that may arise is osmotic shift. This is when the water content of the lens is absorbed by the eye. This will result in the lens sticking to eye.
TIPS FOR FIXING DRY EYES
Solutions depend on the issues that are causing the discomfort but some tips might include:
- Using a wetting agent in the form of a drop to extend wear time can work for some, though I caution doing this without talking to your eye health practitioner as it can sometimes mask another problem and lead to more damage. A more frequent replacement schedule can help if the symptoms are a result of lens deposits.
- Switching to a lens with lower water content or a rigid gas permeable lens if you are prone to dry eyes may help increase comfort.
- Try a silicone hydrogel lens with a quality wetting agent, this can help those who are experiencing discomfort from lack of oxygen. Some of my top lenses for comfort are the silicone hydrogel lenses including (by order of my favorites)
- Acuvue Oasys – available in toric for astigmatism and multifocal varieties and is made up of 38% water.
- Biofinity by Cooper Vision which has a 48% water content. Only a toric and spherical option here.
- Air Optix Aqua and Air Optix Night & Day by CIBA Vision is also great. Air Optix come in a multi-focal and an astigmatic option, however, the Night and Day don’t have multi-focal or toric lenses
- Purevision and Purevision 2 by Bausch and Lomb are not my favorites for dry eyes but I know many fitters who do really well with the Bausch and Lomb lenses. They do have a great multi-focal lens for presbyopes and their toric lenses are easy fits for astigmatic patients.
If you are having symptoms of dry eyes or discomfort when wearing your contact lenses make an appointment to have you optician or eye care professional to get checked and possibly re-fit with a lens better suited to your needs.
One of the top questions that I get at The Spectacle Shoppe is, "What is Astigmatism"? In short, Astigmatism is a common type of refractive error. It is a condition in which the eye does not focus light evenly onto the retina -- the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye. Instead of creating one focus point, the rugby ball-shaped cornea creates multiple focus points (see diagram). To help illustrate further, I've sourced The National Eye Institutes' explanation of the facts on astigmatism.
WHAT IS REFRACTION?
Refraction is the bending of light as it passes through one object to another. Vision occurs when light rays are bent (refracted) as they pass through the cornea and the lens. The light is then focused on the retina. The retina converts the light-rays into messages that are sent through the optic nerve to the brain. The brain interprets these messages into the images we see.
HOW DOES ASTIGMATISM OCCUR?
Astigmatism occurs when light is bent differently depending on where it strikes the cornea and passes through the eyeball. The cornea of a normal eye is curved like a basketball, with the same degree of roundness in all areas. An eye with astigmatism has a cornea that is curved more like a football/rugby ball shape (see diagram), with some areas that are steeper or more rounded than others. This can cause images to appear blurry and stretched out.
WHO IS AT RISK FOR ASTIGMATISM?
Astigmatism can affect both children and adults. Some patients with slight astigmatism will not notice much change in their vision. It is important to have eye examinations at regular intervals in order to detect any astigmatism early on for children.
WHAT ARE THE SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF ASTIGMATISM?
Signs and symptoms include:
- Distorted or blurred vision at all distances
- Difficulty driving at night
If you experience any of these symptoms, visit your eye care professional. If you wear glasses or contact lenses and still have these issues, a new prescription might be needed.
HOW IS ASTIGMATISM DIAGNOSED?
Astigmatism is usually found during a comprehensive dilated eye exam. Being aware of any changes in your vision is important. It can help in detecting any common vision problems. If you notice any changes in your vision, visit your eye care professional for a comprehensive eye dilated examination.
CAN YOU HAVE ASTIGMATISM AND NOT KNOW IT?
It is possible to have mild astigmatism and not know about it. This is especially true for children, who are not aware of their vision being other than normal. Some adults may also have mild astigmatism without any symptoms. It's important to have comprehensive dilated eye exams to make sure you are seeing your best