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Understanding & Adapting to Varifocals

What are Varifocals?

Varifocals or progressive lenses allow the user to see objects at all distances. They are made up of three main areas, distance, intermediate and near vision, blended into one lens.

Distance Vision

You use the upper part of the lens for distance vision

Intermediate Vision

As you lower your gaze towards the reading area your eyes pass through the area that we call the ‘progressive corridor' for viewing mid distance objects.

Near Vision

As your eyes lower to a comfortable reading position you are now in the reading area at the bottom of the lens.

Getting used to Varifocal lenses

If you have not worn Varifocal lenses before they may take a little while for you to adapt to them. What ever you want to focus on, simply point your nose at the object, then raise or lower your head slightly until it is in focus using the part of the lens that corresponds to the distance of the object. Point your nose and adjust your chin.

Practical Advice

Varifocals are dynamic lenses and ideally suited to an active life style. They eliminate the need to carry several pairs of spectacles, constantly swapping between pairs in the course of every day life. However no one pair of spectacles can cover every situation and in some situations they may not be suitable. For example when shopping at the supermarket, if you need to read a tin or packet on the top shelf you will bring the item down to read the contents.

If you are at a junction whilst driving you should move your head from side to side (point your nose) rather than just your eyes.

You need to pay particular attention to how the lenses affect your peripheral vision and overall perception of the space around you. You may find it easier to use your mirrors whilst reversing your vehicle rather than turning your head.

If your eyes get tired remove your glasses to rest your eyes.

If you do a lot of reading it may be less stressful to use a pair of reading glasses.

Watch your step whilst descending stairs or crossing a threshold.