Bifocal Contact Lens

The Scope Of Bifocal Contacts


Bifocal contact lenses are fairly new to the market. People who need bifocals have the condition known as presbyopia. Presbyopia is the inability of the eye to focus sharply on nearby objects because the crystalline lens looses its elasticity. This condition usually appears once a person is 40 years old or more and the condition becomes worse with advancing age. A sign that you may have presbyopia is if you need to move reading material, such as the newspaper or a restaurant menu, farther from your eyes than normal in order to focus on it.

There used to be only one choice for those who needed bifocals, and that was to have bifocal glasses. However, recent years have seen advancements in technology, and bifocal contact lenses are now available in several different forms. You now have the choice of bifocal soft or rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses, frequent replaceable lenses, and disposable lenses.

Bifocal contacts work much the same was as bifocal glasses. Each lens has two powers: one for correcting distance vision if you need it and one to correct near vision. There are three basic kinds of bifocal contact lenses: translating, aspheric and concentric.
Translating contacts have two distinct powers in each lens, such as traditional lined bifocal glasses. Distance vision would be on top, and near vision would be on bottom. These contacts are referred to have a flat bottom to prevent the lenses from rotating in the eyes.

Other contacts, such as aspheric and concentric, make a transition from distance to near vision like the progressive bifocal glasses. Aspheric contacts have both the distance and the near prescriptions located around the pupil. Concentric contacts typically have the near prescription in the center of the lens and the distance prescription around the outside of the lens, this is often called progressive. Regressive concentric contacts have the distance and near prescriptions reversed.

It will take some time for your eyes to adjust to the bifocal contacts. After a little while, your eyes will learn to differentiate between the different prescriptions, and will begin to use the proper prescription for the proper distance. If waiting for your eyes to adjust to the contacts does not appeal to you, or you have other vision needs that bifocal contacts can’t meet, your eye care professional may recommend monovision contact lenses.

Like other contact lenses, bifocal or monovision contacts demand the same amount of care and maintenance. So you have to disinfect the lenses with solution and clean them regularly. Before going to bed soak the lenses in the solution and prevent it from drying out. Make sure that you are adjusting well to the lenses and pay a visit to your eye care professional after a few weeks.

Another point to take into consideration is the cost of the contacts. Bifocal contacts are made for the individual prescriptions, and are not mass produced like some of the traditional contacts. Therefore, they may be more expensive since they can be viewed as special order items. Ask your eye care professional for an estimate so you can know how much it will cost you before you decide if bifocal contacts are right for you.