So, you’ve made the big step and got your first pair of progressive lenses. We know what question is going through your mind now though… “Will I ever get used to them!” Don’t worry, they can take a bit of getting used to, but follow our top ten tips to ease your way into the comfort and freedom of progressive lenses!
1. MAKE IT EASY ON YOURSELF! If this is your first pair of progressive lenses, make it easy on yourself by initially wearing them within the familiar surroundings of your home. Familiarity in your own space will help ease the transition.
2. BEAT THE CLOCK! On the first day, wear them for just 2 hours, then add 2 hours every day after that. Follow the next steps, and by the end of the week you’ll be wearing them for the full day every day and wearing them with confidence… trust us!
3. DON’T BE AFRAID OF MAKING A COMMITMENT! Once you’ve built up the hours, even if you don’t normally wear glasses for an extended period of time, keep your progressives on full-time for at least another week. It’ll help you adjust far quicker and stand you in good stead for the future! Often, those who complain “I could never get used to them” are those who only wore them for two or three hours a day at the most – sadly, this isn’t enough time for your eyes to build up a memory of how to adapt.
4. ONE STEP AT A TIME! When it comes to climbing or descending stairs, tilt your head towards where your foot is going to land, and be aware of how far you are from the steps you’re about to go up (or down). Sounds like we’re teaching you how to put one foot in front of the other? We are… but paying attention to this tip (for even just a day or two) will help prevent a trip or a stumble… something that could hurt more than your pride!
5. ARE YOU READING ME CLEARLY? If you’re not wearing progressives, you’ll naturally tilt your head down to read – and this works perfectly. After all, it’s how regular lenses are designed to work! With progressives, if you tilt your head down, your glasses move down too – and so does the focal-point! With progressives – keep your head still, and point your gaze lower. It’ll soon become second nature! Experiment by holding your book at different distances from your eyes, and move your head slowly up and down to adjust!
6. NEW HORIZON! The upper portion of progressive lenses is clear… from here through to the bottom of the lens there’s a gradual change in optical power. Because there are no guides to help, getting used to where you should be looking takes practice – and that’s what you’ll need to do. Essentially, and this works so well because your progressive lenses were made uniquely for you, there’s a ‘sweet spot’ in the lens which matches your focusing requirement for every distance – from close-up to the full horizon!
7. A BLINKERED VIEW? Progressives, almost uniquely in the eyewear world, knowingly produce a slightly distorted view out towards their edges (this is required to help keep your view clear down the centre of the lenses). You may initially notice this distortion in your peripheral vision – it doesn’t mean your lenses are faulty, and within a short period you’ll become accustomed to it. Importantly – it doesn’t affect your peripheral vision!
8. BABY YOU CAN DRIVE MY CAR! While it’s all well and good keeping your glasses on fulltime while you get accustomed to them, this must be avoided while driving a car or operating machinery. A crowded highway and 140kmh don’t make the ideal partners for your discovery that these great new progressives are going to take a couple more days of getting used to than you thought! Your witness, m’lord.
9. TAKE GOOD CARE OF ME! Proper care techniques are as essential for progressives as they are for any eyewear! Keep them clean and keep your vision clear! As with all glasses, when you’re not using them keep them safe in a case. Keep your lenses away for abrasive surfaces (this includes that loose change and those jagged keys in your trouser pocket!), and wet them slightly before cleaning them with a soft cloth. Oh, and as tempting as it may be to share your new-found enthusiasm for progressives… don’t let other people try them on – this can over-stretch the frame and misalign the unique fit created for you.
10. CHECK IN TO GET CHECKED OUT! If, after a couple of weeks have passed, you’re still not fully accustomed to your progressives, it might be worth checking back in with your optician for a bit of thorough one-on-one time again!