Progressive and Multifocal Lenses

Progressive and Multifocal Lenses at Custom Eyecare Newcastle

Are you having problems with your multifocal glasses? Are you having trouble getting used to them, or looking through the right section? Read on for the explanation and the solution! 

Prog Lens anatomyMultifocal or progressive lenses, allow you to see close up and far away with one pair of glasses. The lower area of the lens is for close-up focus and the top area is for general and long-distance viewing. There’s a gradual blend between the top and bottom areas, so that you have all focuses in between too. For example, with multifocals you can focus on a computer screen, a music stand, a supermarket shelf, etc. You can also talk to people, walk around, drive a car, even fly a plane in multifocals!

Sometimes people think getting multifocals means they have to wear glasses full time, but this is a myth. Multifocals can be worn as much or as little as you like.

Multifocals are extremely versatile and very popular. These days they have largely replaced bifocals, which only have two sections: close-up and long-distance – there is no ‘in-between’ for computers and arms length activities. A bifocal has a visible line within the lens. A multifocal has no visible line at all.

A frequently asked question about multifocals is, “are they hard to get used to?”. This probably originates from back in the early years when the available lenses were designed without computer assistance, and the importance of accurate customised facial & frame measurements was not fully appreciated.

professional frame and lens fittingAt Custom Eyecare (formerly known as Marketown Optical) we use a professional pupillometer to order multifocals. This equipment is a bit like a pair of binoculars that you look through while your qualified optical dispenser takes pupil position measurements to an accuracy of 0.5mm, resulting in multifocals that are easy to use.

Even so, we still see many people coming in with multifocal glasses purchased elsewhere, and having problems with narrow clear zones or unnatural head movements when reading. Nearly always, this is due to the “fitting centre” of the lenses not being aligned correctly with the pupil centres of the eyes, and this is something our optometrists and optical dispensers are qualified to assess.

It’s normal for there to be a little blur on the edges of the peripheral vision, but we find that if the optical centres are measured & manufactured correctly in the first place, adaptation and getting used to is very straightforward. Of course, this assumes that the lenses themselves are a modern type, and not an older design which some discount optometrists still sell as “new” lenses. We only use the latest German and Japanese designs from quality lens manufacturers.

Contact us to arrange  a comprehensive eye & vision check, including multifocal problem-solving.