Aging causes changes in every part of your body, including your eyes. Although adjusting to some of these changes is no more difficult than tweaking your eyeglass prescription, others can affect y ...View Article
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If all refractive errors (aberrations in the eye structure that cause distorted vision) were as straightforward as nearsightedness or farsightedness, prescribing and creating corrective lenses would be a much simpler matter. But as your eye changes, you may develop several different types of refractive errors simultaneously -- or you have been born with progressively worsening astigmatism that complicates your lens prescription. In the past, these issues might have confined your choices to eyeglasses. But here at Crystal Vision Center, our optometrist in College Station offers state-of-the-art multifocal contact lenses.
One of the most common vision disorders in individuals aged 40 and over is called presbyopia. As the lens of the eye ages, it becomes stiffer and less able to change it field of focus easily. This makes it harder and harder for you to read fine print or perform detailed work at close range. As a result, you may find yourself effectively nearsighted and farsighted at the same time. To make matters worse, tiny irregularities in the surface of your cornea may contribute additional distortion, a condition known as astigmatism. In the early days of contact lenses, it was impossible to create lenses that could correct for all these differences, and presbyopia sufferers had no choice but to wear eyeglasses. Today, however, modern contact lens design and fabrication techniques have made it possible for these small wonders to correct multiple fields of vision.
Multifocal lenses come in a variety of forms, but all the work very much like "progressive" multifocal lenses so popular among modern eyeglass wearers. Instead of sharp divisions between visual fields, these lenses feature gentle transition zones from one field to the next. One type of multifocal contact lens commonly prescribed by our eye doctor is called a concentric multifocal. This lens places both near-field correction and and distance correction fields in concentric rings surrounding the pupil. The zone in the center can be made to correct for either near vision or distance vision, whichever you prefer. Your brain learns to see these fields as "normal," choosing which one it wants to perceive at any given moment.
A variation of this design is the "blended" contact lens, which blends both near vision and distance vision correction in a single zone at the center of the pupil. If you're getting rigid gas-permeable lenses (perhaps because you have hard-to-fit contacts), you also have the option of alternating or "translating" lenses. These lenses provide large, separate near and distance fields, just like ordinary bifocals in eyeglasses. Our eye doctor can even fit you with modified multifocal contact lenses that correct for both presbyopia and astigmatism. If you can't get used to having multifocals in both eyes, you can try monovision (the use of a different visual field correction for each eye). Contact Crystal Vision Center today to learn more about multifocal contacts and schedule an appointment with our eye doctor!