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  • Tim Trinh, O.D., F.A.A.O.

What are progressive glasses and are they the ultimate vision solution?

Progressive glasses, also referred to as no-line bifocals, offer more than what their name implies. As individuals reach the age of 40, reading can become more challenging.


Progressive glasses enable wearers to have both near and far vision with just one pair. Despite their advanced technology, the effectiveness of progressives depends on the correct usage. These glasses are crafted with distance vision in the upper portion and reading vision in the lower part, with the prescription transitioning gradually in between.


Proper adjustment to progressives entails understanding how to align the head position according to the distance of the object being viewed. While progressives are impressive, one drawback is their compatibility with computer screens. Mastering the use of progressive glasses is the key to a successful and frustration-free day.


A progressive glass is akin to a Swiss army knife, aiming to offer convenience and flexibility to address diminishing reading abilities as we grow older. Nevertheless, a progressive lens is not the ultimate solution for every task. It is most suitable for situations and daily activities involving frequent changes in focus. For instance, activities like grocery shopping, where we need to read labels and look down the aisles while moving.


Due to the design of progressive lenses, the zones for different vision ranges are limited in order to incorporate them all into one lens. Consequently, tasks like computer work or extensive reading necessitate larger portions of the lens dedicated to a specific distance. In such scenarios, specialized glasses tailored for the task, like computer glasses or reading glasses, might be a more suitable choice.


When deciding on what vision corrections are best for you, it is important to have a discussion with your optometrist regarding your daily goals and tasks. Note that one pair of glasses may not be the solution for everything.

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