Sunday, July 11, 2010

Advice please?

You may have noticed that I've got new glasses. I rather like the frames but I'm having the devil of a job getting the lenses sorted and I'd value your advice.

The reason for getting new glasses was mostly that the old ones had darkened with age*. I was also hoping to be able to read books a bit nearer to my face again!

My experience so far has not been very good. I've been offered lenses that:

  1. were so bad for distance that I couldn't use them for driving
  2. were no better or worse than my old ones 
  3. that worked if I crooked my neck right down all the time 
  4. that work at all distances, but only if I lift them up on my nose for reading. They then get smeary from my eyelashes

My dilemma is: do I go back to lenses no. 2, which aren't a very good prescription but will work, or do I get my money back, go somewhere else, and have to start all over again? I feel like I'm being fussy but I'm sure I've had better glasses than this. Help!

*Photochromic lenses do that. No one warned me.


Lexi said...

My subjective feeling is that there is a lot of difference between a prescription from a really good optometrist and a bog-standard one. I go to a small independent group, University Vision, because they seem really thorough when testing my eyes.

Could you get a recommendation from a friend who lives near you?

Ideally one wants specs one can forget all about :o)

McKoala said...

Oooh, as a fellow member of the visually challenged, I love a chat about specs.

First, look at the inside of the arms of your old and new glasses. Glasses come in different sizes, something that opticians seldom bother to tell you, because they just like to see the ones they have on their shelf. Your new frames may not be the right size - that may be why you have to lift them up on to your nose for reading, the youre eyelids brush against them. Uncomfortable. If you think the frames may not be the right size, challenge the optician.

Another simple explanation, this time for point three and four, may be that the optician has not positioned the lenses correctly for your eyes. I've had this. It's a pain. It takes a lot of to-ing and fro-ing for minor adjustments, and sometimes I just live with it and live with weird vision for a while.

One and two - can't help there! That seems like a faulty prescription to me.

Hope that helps; keep trying!

Old Kitty said...

Oh fairyhedgehog! You must get lenses that are correct for you not settle for anything less!! :-)

I can't believe your optician can't get the proper lenses that are unique to your eyes' needs! As they are not cheap (the lenses) I'd shop around - I really would!

Good luck!!
Take care

fairyhedgehog said...

Lexi, it's a good point about getting recommendation. I wonder who I know who has good varifocals and got them locally. My son and his fiancée have used my current optician for single vision lenses with no problems so I didn't expect this!

McK, I can't read the numbers on the specs arms, they're too small! I think you're right - I've had two wrong prescriptions, followed by the right one being set first far too high, then slightly too low. I can't decide whether to let them have another go or just give up on them.

Old Kitty,
You must get lenses that are correct for you not settle for anything less!! :-)

It's silly but I needed to hear someone say this! I've never had such problems before.

Phoenix said...

I would definitely go back and see what can be done if these are bifocals.

I'm at that awkward sightedness where I use prescription glasses for distance but don't need any help for reading letters and printed books at comfortable reading distance. I do need help seeing the computer screen, though, and since my job demands I spend hours each day doing that, my optician suggested I start with a low strength reading lens in the morning and use a higher strength later in the day once my eyes have become fatigued. So I wear different pairs of reading glasses over my prescription ones and am constantly shuffling them: one pair off, another one on, both pairs off, one pair alone... I look ridiculous, so it's a good thing I work from home ;o)

My point for you in this is that your vision may change a bit, especially later in the day, to where you need more magnification to read -- hence the need to push the glasses higher on your nose to bring the lenses closer to your eyes and magnify things a bit more. Have you noticed WHEN you need to push them up to read? If you're in bifocals, could be you need trifocals (I need quintfocals or progressives myself, but I like more field of vision than that).

fairyhedgehog said...

Hi Phoenix, these are varifocals. My old ones are still fine, despite small changes in prescription. I've just gone back to them and they're better than my new ones!

I didn't know about the change in strength over the day, and if that's due to tiredenss then it could be that the CFS is making it harder to sort out.

On the other hand, I'm relying on the fact that my old glasses are adequate all day (although not excellent) and the new ones aren't! And I have to lift the lenses to read at all times of day.

Wendy Ramer said...

I have progressive lenses that I swear by. (You also need a good opthomolgist who can write a good script for you.) Many people complain about the progressives but I upgraded to Veralux which widens the visual field and eliminates that warped effect. Worth the money.

Hope it helps.

fairyhedgehog said...

Hi Wendy, so far I've had two wrong prescriptions, and two wrong lens fittings. I'm ready to give up!

Sarah Laurenson said...

Veralux? That sounds like what I need. Thanks, Wendy.

I have on my first pair of trifocal progressives - with all the bells and whistles - and I have a bad time with them. Sucks that they cost so much! Especially considering that lenses cost very little to make.

My distance vision is mostly fine and I don't really need glasses there. It's reading and for the computer that it helps. But the doctor and I talked about the convenience of having glasses I could wear all the time. Even got the transition lenses so they could become my sunglasses.

Well, they don't get dark enough, fast enough. My distance vision is better without them. Reading is tricky as the lenses are definitely not positioned right. Where each eye can really focus is a tiny area and they're not lined up with each other. I have to tilt my head up to read the computer screen. When I look at a lamp, I see an image of the lamp overlayed on it, but slightly higher. All bad signs.

The one time I tried to get them fixed, the guy I needed to talk to was out having lasix surgery. Making time to get these fixed is tricky for me as this seems to be a low priority in my head.

So, I use these for the computer. I use 99 cent store ones for reading. It's funny, but I like the 99 cent store ones much better because the window of clear text is not limited to one tiny spot. But of course, they're not very fashionable.

Not sure my saga helped you at all though.

Sarah Laurenson said...

Oooo. Look at that Live Traffic Feed. "A visitor from North Hollywood". Yep. That's me.

writtenwyrdd said...

You know, it sounds to me like you have the same problem that I do when people insist on making your glasses be focused when they are jammed against your face. I wear my glasses perched down my nose, and I insist on getting them set up so I can use them that way.

So your problem may be that the lenses are not changing from one distance to the next where they should for where you naturally wear them. It's even trickier with trifocals like I wear. I keep having to have my glasses redone when I get new ones because of it. Good thing they are understanding and my optometrist owns the lab!

fairyhedgehog said...

Sarah, I'm just sorry to hear that you're having an even worse time than I am with your glasses! It sounds like they're set up wrong and you need to take them back and get your money back, or get them properly adjusted. It is terribly time-consuming, though, and you have so much else you're doing.

Hollywood, eh? How cool!

ww, they're very nice at the opticians I've gone to and they seem to have no problem with keep trying new lenses and adjustments but I'm beginning to wonder how competent they are. I think I should have been advised to go for metal frames, as they're more adjustable. It's a ten day wait every time they change the lenses. I've had enough!

jjdebenedictis said...

I have no advice beyond seconding what Kitty said--don't settle; get glasses that work.

It truly does suck that it takes so long for them to try a new fix. Going to another place may be the best solution if your current choice has messed up so many times.

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, jj! I shall just have to face telling them "no".

Bernita said...

And I third Kitty.
Good Lord, you MUST have proper glasses, no "making do."

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, Bernita. Your support really helps!

Scarlet Blue said...

I was talking yesterday about the importance of finding a good optician. I have very strange eyes and have worn glasses since I was eleven [and contact lenses]. Please persevere and get your lenses sorted, it's the worse thing in the world to not be able to see properly.

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, Scarlet. I think I shall get my money back and try a different optician, as soon as I get my oomph back.

(The doctor has cut back my vitamin B12 injections to "see how I go". Predictably, cutting down on the one thing that made me feel better has made me feel worse. Doctors!)

Scarlet Blue said...

Can you eat salmon?
I prescribe a big plate of scrambled eggs and salmon.
I'd feel pretty rubbish if I didn't stick to a diet of chicken, fish and eggs!

fairyhedgehog said...

Scarlet, what a brilliant idea! I'll have to try that.

Demon Hunter said...

Wow, I hope you find the glasses you need. I know nothing about specs. :-/

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, Demon Hunter. I hope so too!

Richard said...

Your vision changing as you tire doesn't surprise me in the least as mine does that.

I have a pair of prescription reading glasses that I only need to use in the evening when I'm getting floppy, the rest of the time I'm fine without.

Trouble is, if you vision varies substantially - and with CFS as a complicating issue it may do - even the best optician is on a hiding to nothing because they eyes they measure and prescribe for won't need the same prescription as you do later in the day when you're tired... but if they test you when you're tired to get it right then they'll be useless *until* you're tired... and I can't see any obvious solution to eyes that are continually changing, except, possibly adopting part of what Sarah's had to do.

Varifocals are great most of the time, and other than reading *when you're tired* you'd probably be ok with yours.

If you work within that constraint and get a separate pair of dedicated reading glasses chosen when you're very tired - for use *only* when you're very tired - that's probably the best you can reasonably achieve.

fairyhedgehog said...

Thanks, Richard. Maybe the problem is varying levels of tiredness. I find I can manage with my old glasses all day but then maybe I expect less of them because they're old.

I'm going to get my money back, wait, and think about it.

At least my hearing aids are working beautifully!

Richard N said...

FH - sometimes we forget to expect a little less of *ourselves* as we get older too...

I frequently expect my body to do what it could when I was 20 then get upset when it can't. :-(

Trouble is, by head is still resolutely in it's 20s and it just can't understand why when it says "I want" my body says "yeah... right..."

fairyhedgehog said...

Richard, doubly so with the CFS. In my forties I took up springboard diving, and was full of energy. The "aging" has happened much more suddenly than I was expecting!

sylvia said...

I think that it is easy to feel like you should just make do because the effort in insisting is a major drain.

But yeah, you really *must* have good glasses which are comfortable and of the right prescription. On the bright side, you can now make your point somewhat more clearly by being able to show the glasses that you are happy with and the glasses that are not working so that they can, maybe, work out what to do right.

fairyhedgehog said...

sylvia, I've given up on the current optician and taken the glasses back for a refund. I've had enough.

So now I need to find another optician. On the bright side, Specsavers is cheaper!

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