When to consider reading glasses
If you’ve started experiencing headaches or tension behind your eyes whilst reading, watching tv, or using a computer, it may be time to start considering reading glasses. The best thing you can do in this situation is book an appointment with your optician, who can give you a thorough eye test.
Choosing your reading glasses
Whatever you decide, make sure you don’t just put up with new glasses or contact lenses if they are uncomfortable, or you don’t experience a positive change. Despite all of the tests that are carried out by an optician, it is often a case of trial and error to find the right solution, and prolonged use of the wrong strength lenses can lead to further eyesight problems.
Many people don’t realise that different opticians will prescribe a different strength of reading glasses. This is down to a number of factors, including the tests used by each optician, and the state of your vision at that specific time (it can vary quite a bit throughout the day).
Therefore, you may be prescribed new reading glasses, or different strength lenses, and they could actually negatively impact your vision, causing even more headaches than before. In this situation you should explain the situation to the optician and request a different strength of lenses or a retest. It’s important you explain your lifestyle to your optician, as somebody working in front of a computer screen all day will have different requirements to somebody who drives for a living.
If you only need reading glasses you can pick these up very cheaply in many regular shops. However, this isn’t recommended. These cheaper glasses are generally less likely to be the exact strength they state, and more likely to contain scratches, both of which could lead to further eyesight problems.
Glasses or contact lenses?
If you are getting headaches even when you’re not performing tasks that are strenuous on your eyes (such as reading or watching television) then it could be possible that you need permanent glasses or contact lenses. Again, this can be established by your optician through a routine eye test.
The decision between glasses and contact lenses is a difficult one. You need to consider if you are comfortable placing a lens on your eye for the whole day, especially considering many people experience irritation from the lenses at first. However, lenses are more convenient as you don’t have to worry about carrying them around with you, and many people prefer lenses for aesthetic reasons.
The price is another factor to be considered when choosing between glasses and contact lenses. Generally glasses are the cheaper option, as they are a one-off purchase, whereas contact lenses are a regularly occuring fee. However, some designer glasses can cost thousands so it depends on your taste.