Bifocals are a type of lens that people have installed in glasses when they develop a condition known as presbyopia. One of the main indications that you\’re starting to develop presbyopia is that it is becoming more and more difficult to read a newspaper or menu without holding it farther from your eyes.
Bifocals are also available in contact lenses, and as with glasses, enable you to see both near and far with the same lens. Basically, optics for both fields of vision are right there in front of you and you must focus on a specific part of the lens, depending on what you\’re trying to see at the time. Like regular contacts, bifocal contact lenses are available in both hard and soft varieties, and some types are even disposable. This type allows you to toss them out at certain intervals and start fresh with a brand new pair of contacts.
Wearing bifocal contact lenses isn\’t easy for everyone, and it does take some getting used to before you\’re able to complete all visual tasks successfully. In many cases, you may have to try out the handful of different bifocal contact lenses that are available before you settle on one set of contacts that is right for you.
Bifocal contact lenses are available in a variety of combinations, which may be frustrating at first but will benefit you in the end. Center distance bifocal contact lenses consist of alternating rings of near optics and distance, while center near bifocal contact lenses feature a gradual transition to near power as you look toward the periphery of the contact lens. The contacts can also be created as a combination, where your dominant eye is biased toward distance and your weaker eye toward the near vision. You can also use contacts for your distance vision and reading glasses for near vision if trying to see both within the same contact lens just isn\’t working for you.
With hard or gas permeable contact lenses, the bifocal may be created as center distance so your vision transitions to near as you move toward the edge of the lens, or segmented where there is a line with two separate zones like with glasses. You will likely need a few office visits in order to find the right fit and type of bifocal contact lens. The more types you\’re able to try, the better chance you\’ll have of finding bifocal contacts you can live with and do the job they\’re intended to do.
Your final choice of bifocal contact lens depends on how comfortable you are using the bifocal feature. Some people are fine with the standard glasses style contact lens, while others prefer switching from eye to eye. An alternative to straight bifocal contact lenses are multifocal contacts, which use a silicone hydrogel to let more oxygen into your cornea than standard contact lenses. This improves comfort, and allows you to wear the contact lenses for longer periods of time. Given the varieties of bifocal contact lenses, odds are there is a viable option for anyone with presbyopia.
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