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Before buying glasses off the shelf, READ THIS

If you plan on buying glasses off the shelf, it is not entirely a bad idea. However, there are important things you should know. Read the story below to learn more.

A patient who wanted a new pair of reading glasses walked into the clinic. One of the lenses in her current reading glasses had fallen out and she could not find it.

The eye doctor asked for her prescription and she didn’t have it. Then, the doctor proceeded to check the power of the remaining lens using the lensmeter.

The lady appeared to be in her early 40s and the power of the lens was +3.00. That was quite high for someone of that age. So, the doctor decided to ask more questions.

To cut a long story, short, the woman was in her mid-forties. She bought the glasses in the market early in the year and according to her, the glasses were okay; though she usually had headaches from time to time.

Then, the doctor convinced her to do an eye exam to get the right prescription and these were his findings:

  • Her actual prescription was far lower than what was in the glasses she had been using. This means she was using the wrong eyeglasses all the while. Wearing glasses with the wrong lens power causes eye discomfort. If the power is too high, it can cause headaches and eyestrain.
  • She had a mild refractive error requiring correction for distance vision. Since reading glasses provide correction for near vision only, the woman’s distance vision was not corrected.
  • The prescription for her two eyes was not the same. Since the lenses in a pair of off-the-shelf reading glasses have the same power, the reading glasses did not adequately cater for her needs.
  • Complications of hypertension were visible on her retina. If you are like most people, you would probably not go for an eye check until you have obvious eye symptoms. Therefore, getting a pair of off-the-shelf reading glasses that relieves your symptoms can make you forgo eye exam and further delay the detection of non-symptomatic vision-threatening conditions (if any).

Eye examination is very important. Apart from determining your correct lens prescription, it can reveal vision-threatening problems that do not show symptoms early enough. It can also give an insight into chronic and life-threatening health problems that you may have and not know about.

Have you seen a place you can get a pair of glasses off the shelf?  That is not a problem. Just make sure you have done your eye examination and have the right prescription.

If your prescription is not available among glasses off the shelf, do well to get the right one from your doctor.