Wednesday, April 05, 2017

I can see clearly now

I started wearing glasses when I was 12 years old.  I switched to contact lenses when I was 18 years old.  I'm 1 of 4 children and all of us wear glasses or contacts.

For many years now I've been wearing extended wear disposable contacts.  I wear them for a month (sometimes longer when I forget) then throw them away and put in a fresh pair.  I love them!

My prescription has been to correct nearsightedness (can't see distances) and astigmatism.  However, now that I am "of a certain age" I have had more and more trouble seeing things up close too.

I was able to compensate for this easily with my iPhone but adjusting the font to a larger size.  But for work I have to read MLS fact sheets that will only print at a set size in order to fit all the info on a single page.  I compensated for this by using a pair of cheap reading glasses, purchased at the dollar store.  This worked fine when I was at my desk, but when I tried to refer to the fact sheets while out on showings, I literally couldn't distinguish between some letters and numbers.

So I discussed this with my eye doctor during my last annual check up.  He suggested I try mono vision contact lenses.  This means you wear a distance correction lens in your dominant eye and a reading correction lens in your other eye.  Initially this sounded crazy as I imagined myself stumbling around trying to figure out which eye to use to see distances an up close.  

But my doctor said that your eyes automatically pick the right one to see what you're trying to see, and while some people take a day or 2 to adjust to this, most people adjust within an hour.

Still, I couldn't imagine how this would work.  So my eye doctor suggested we experiment with it.  I put my 'regular' (distance) lens back in my right eye, and then he gave me a reading correction lens for my left eye.

"Look out the window at that sign across the street.  Can you read the sign?" he asked.

"Yes" I responded.

"Good.  Now take a look at this" he said and handed me a piece of paper.  "Can you read this?"

"Yes!" I responded in amazement.

Its hard to describe how it works, but your eyes just 'figure out' which one of them to use for distance vision and reading vision.  I was sold.

So now I wear mono vision contacts and have not needed the reading glasses.  I will admit that some of my distance acuity is reduced, but its still satisfactory and is certainly better than when I couldn't read things up close.

Anyone else wear mono vision contacts?  What's your experience/satisfaction level?


Mark Alexander said...

I've been wearing contact lenses my entire adult life. Switched to monovision about ten years ago upon reaching "that certain age" when I couldn't focus any more and the hassle of reading glasses just became too much. Love them. Never have had an issue, but I keep a spare distance lens for the reading eye if I know I'm going to be doing a lot of driving at night (like an overnight road trip, something I don't do nearly as much as I did when I was younger).

Fearsome Beard said...

I have mono vision contacts and they are ok. I've had them for about four years. I way prefer my transition glasses over my mono vision contacts. So I wear glasses 90% of the time. I've tried multi focal contacts and really super can't stand those.

Biki Honko said...

I've been wearing glasses since I was 8 and have worn contacts on and off. But with the financial press of raising 4 children, I went the cheaper route of wearing glasses. I have bi-focals and sincerely hate them. I have to crane my head so far back to read something over my head, like at grocery stores and the library. I've thought about those contacts, and it sounds as if you had a great experience with them. Maybe its time for me to give them a try.