FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: How often should I have my eyes examined? "I can see fine - why should I get an eye exam?"
The doctor recommends a yearly comprehensive eye examination. A comprehensive exam evaluates not only how you are seeing but also how healthy your eyes are. The first portion of the exam measures how you see (your "acuity") with or without your glasses/contacts, how your eyes team together (binocularity) and a refraction (determination of your eyeglass prescription). The second and most important part of the examination is an assessment of your ocular health. The doctor take into account your overall medical health when evaluating the external and internal structures of the eye. The doctors have found signs of such serious conditions as diabetes and brain tumors in patients who simply came in for "routine eye exams."
Q: The optician recommended that I choose a really small frame. Donít I need a large frame for my prescription? Will I still have good side vision through such a small frame?
The optician will help you choose the smallest frame that appropriately fits your face and maximizes your prescription.
A quick lesson in optics: A prescription is precisely ground into the center portion of the lens that is sitting directly in front of your pupil -this is called the optical center of the lens. As you move away from the optical center of the lens, the prescription is not as "true" so basically itís wasted lens material that is just adding a lot of extra weight and thickness to the lens.
So when it comes to glasses, smaller frames will always give you a thinner and lighter lens prescription without compromising any of your peripheral vision. Remember, peripheral vision is designed to help you detect motion, not to see 20/20, so the prescription doesnít correct your peripheral vision. Of course, the first few days that you wear your smaller frame, you may be aware of seeing the outline of the frame-donít worry, your brain will learn to ignore this!
Q: What is the difference between prescription reading glasses and "over-the counter" or "cheaters"?
While over the counter reading glasses are not harmful and will not damage the eyes, you may not be getting your best and most comfortable visual acuity. For instance, "cheaters" are not made out of ophthalmic grade plastic resulting in significant aberration and distortion in the lenses especially in the higher powers of magnification. The "cheaters" do not take into account the differences between your two eyes, astigmatism and the actual distance between your two eyes and how they are centered in the frame. This may all lead to bigger text but not necessarily clear text as well as headaches, queasiness, and possibly double vision. In short, over-the-counter readers are great "in a pinch" but may not be appropriate for patients who do a significant amount of reading and/or computer work on a daily basis.
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