Aug 17

Bifocal and Progressive Soft Contact Lenses

Posted on August 17, 2019 — by Eric Del Piero

Contact lensesContact lenses are a convenient and effective solution for the most common forms of vision impairment, including nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. At Monterey County Eye Associates, we offer a wide range of contact lenses so that we are able to meet the unique needs of each of our patients.

Many people assume that contact lenses can only correct one field of vision, but that is not the case. We are happy to offer our Salinas, CA, and Monterey, CA, patients custom contact lenses, including bifocal and progressive soft contact lenses.

Correct Vision Near and Far

In most cases of vision impairment, patients have trouble focusing at one distance: either far away or close up. However, as people age, nearly everyone develops presbyopia. Presbyopia is a condition that affects a person’s ability to clearly focus on close-up details. Presbyopia makes it difficult to read, work on a computer, or complete other detailed tasks without the assistance of prescription lenses. Most people will develop presbyopia by the time they reach the age of 40.

If patients already suffer from vision impairment and develops presbyopia, they have two choices. They can either rely on reading glasses, or they can switch to a multifocal lens. Reading glasses effectively treat presbyopia, but they can be inconvenient. Having to keep track of an extra pair of glasses can be a hassle, and switching back and forth between frames is simply annoying.

Multifocal lenses improve vision at all distances so that patients only rely on one pair of prescription lenses. Bifocal lenses essentially cut a lens in half, so that one half of the lens focuses on near vision, while the other focuses on distant vision.

Progressive lenses are a little different. Progressive lenses gradually transition from the bottom of the lens to the top of the lens so that they seamlessly provide vision correction at all distances.

In the past, multifocal lenses were only available for glasses, or for hard contact lenses. However, our patients can now receive custom soft contact lenses in the form of bifocals or progressive lenses.

Benefits of Bifocal and Progressive Soft Contact Lenses

Many patients are happy to learn that bifocal and progressive soft contact lenses are available because they offer many benefits:

  • Keep track of just one pair of prescription lenses
  • See clearly at all distances without switching glasses
  • Insert contact lenses in the morning and don’t worry about your vision for the rest of the day
  • Correct vision discreetly
  • Avoid glasses and frames that can age your appearance

Disadvantages of Bifocal and Progressive Soft Contact Lenses

For all the benefits that bifocal and progressive soft contact lenses provide, there are some drawbacks for patients to consider. It will take some time for the eyes to adjust to a bifocal or progressive lens. While patients grow accustomed to this type of lens, they may experience eye strain or mild headaches.

Other possible issues during this adjustment period include glares or starbursts. These issues are only a problem at night, and should go away once the eyes have gotten used to the new lenses.

Finally, custom lenses do cost more than traditional contact lenses. However, in the long run, the cost of custom contact lenses is unlikely to be much more than the cost of maintaining an extra pair of reading glasses.

In the end, most patients find that the benefits of bifocal and progressive soft contact lenses far outweigh the disadvantages.

Schedule a Consultation

If you would like to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced eye doctors at Monterey County Eye Associates to find out if bifocal or progressive soft contact lenses are right for you, send us a message at your earliest convenience or call (831) 424-1150. We look forward to finding a vision solution that is right for you.

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