There are many choices to consider when it comes time to get new glasses. There are hundreds of frames to choose from, and even more lens options, add-ons, and upgrades to sort through. It is important to communicate with your optician in order to get the best frames and lenses for you. We have also assembled a brief guide to help you learn more about some of the most popular lens options.
Anti-Reflective Lenses for Glare
Anti-reflective (AR) coatings is one of the most well-liked lens options. This specialty coating is recommended by eye care professionals in order to reduce glare on both the front and back surfaces of lenses. Reducing reflections off the lenses improves ocular comfort for tasks such as computer work or other digital screen use. It can even improve comfort with night driving by reducing halos or glare from oncoming lights. AR coatings eliminate reflections from lenses in photography and are help glasses appear more cosmetically appealing.
Blue-Blocking Lenses for Digital Screens
Many eye care professionals agree that extensive use of digital screens, including cell phones, computers, tablets, or televisions can increase eye strain and fatigue. New blue-blocking lens technology helps to filter out the potentially harmful rays associated with digital screens, and can help improve visual comfort. Some blue-blocking lenses have a tint applied that gives them a slightly yellow appearance, while others have the blue-blocking material mixed into the lens and are completely clear. Your optician can give you more details about the blue-blocking lenses available to you.
High-Index Lenses for a Sleek Appearance
For those individuals with very strong glasses prescriptions, high-index lenses should be considered. While traditional plastic lenses for high prescriptions will be heavy and have thick edges, high-index lenses are made of a specialty material that allow lenses to be thinner, more lightweight, and more attractive. High-index lenses can also come with additional options such as anti-reflective or blue-blocking coatings.
Photochromatic Lenses for UV Protection
Photochromatic lenses are clear lenses than become tinted when they are exposed to UV light. As these glasses effectively become sunglasses when they are exposed to sunlight, they can be worn full-time. Many people find photochromatic lenses an efficient option when they plan on wearing spectacles full time but want to avoid buying regular glasses and prescription sunglasses. However, there are some drawbacks to photochromatic lenses; some brands are slow to transition from tinted back to clear lenses, making it difficult to see upon coming inside on bright sunny days. Some photochromatic tints do not transition to tinted lenses inside cars because of the UV-blocking properties of car windows and windshields. Ask your optician for recommendations regarding photochromatic lenses and how you plan to use them.
Anti-reflective and blue-blocking coatings, high-index lenses, and photochromatic options are just a few of the many lens choices available to you. Most of these options are offered at a discount through your vision insurance, depending on your plan and benefits. If you are unsure if a certain lens option is appropriate for you, do not hesitate to ask your optician. They will be able to provide tailored recommendations to make sure your glasses perfectly meet your needs.