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6 Myths and Truths About Multifocal Contacts & Glasses

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Multifocal contacts and glasses can be big lifesavers for those experiencing symptoms of presbyopia. But like with everything these days, it can be hard to know what “common knowledge” is actually true when it comes to these incredibly helpful vision aids. Fortunately, our Lincoln Park eye care team has compiled a list of their top myths and facts about multifocal glasses and contacts. Take a look below:

Myth 1: Multifocal glasses must be worn all the time.

Though there’s no problem at all with wearing multifocal glasses all the time, there is certainly no requirement to do so. Many people only put on their multifocals for close-up activities like reading, using an iPad, or looking at a phone or computer. When finished with these activities, they take them off again. Multifocal glasses are also a good choice for people who need reading glasses, as they allow for a clear view across the room without having to remove or look over the glasses.

Myth 2: Multifocal glasses are difficult to get used to.

If multifocal glasses are measured or fitted incorrectly, or if an older, cheaper lens design is used, they may be more difficult to adjust to. However, if glasses and lenses are fitted correctly, multifocal glasses should not be more difficult to get used to than other types of glasses. Our Lincoln Park opticians have years of experience ensuring that you get the right glasses and lenses with the right fit.

Myth 3: Multifocal glasses require awkward head movements to see clearly.

Once again, this only becomes an issue if your multifocal glasses are measured or fitted incorrectly, or if they’re fitted into a frame that’s too small. Correctly measured and fitted multifocal glasses should allow for a natural, comfortable posture and head position when reading or using a computer.

Myth 4: Multifocal contact lenses can’t be worn by people with astigmatism.

While multifocal contact lenses may be more difficult to adjust to for those with astigmatism, there should be no issue wearing them to correct vision. This is especially true if your astigmatism is minor, though even moderate astigmatism often won’t rule out multifocal contact lens wear.

Myth 5: All multifocal contact lenses are the same.

Multifocal contact lenses come in a variety of designs, materials, and wearing schedules. Some have a lined design with distinct lens areas for distance, middle vision and near vision, while others have a multifocal design that gradually changes in power for a natural transition from distance to close-up. They can be made of soft or rigid gas-permeable materials and can be designed for daily or extended wear. Soft multifocal lenses can be worn on a part-time basis, making them a good choice for those who prefer not to wear them every day.

Myth 6: If you’re a good candidate for regular contacts, you’re a good candidate for multifocals.

Unfortunately, people with certain eye types, conditions, or diseases may have a harder time wearing multifocal contacts than they would with regular contacts. This is why it’s so important to have a qualified eye care professional perform a contact lens exam for multifocals. If you’re not a good candidate for these kinds of contact lenses, don’t worry! Our Lincoln Park optical team can still find you the perfect pair of bifocal or multifocal glasses to fit your needs and help you look great.

Want to know more about multifocal contacts and glasses, and how we can help you find the right fit? Visit our Lincoln Park eye care team at Eye Mechanix, or give us a call at 773-857-1260 today!


What can I do to help my eyes adjust faster to my multifocal glasses or contacts?

There will always be some adjustment period for your multifocal glasses or contacts. Though adjustment time will vary person-to-person, wearing your lenses as often and as consistently as possible allows your eyes the ability to get used to moving to the appropriate place on the lens to achieve the desired vision. Over time, this movement becomes reflexive.

What’s the difference between multifocal and bifocal glasses and contacts?

Bifocal contact lenses and glasses have two distinct areas within the lens for distance and close vision, often separated by a line. Multifocal lenses have multiple vision areas and are often designed as “no-line” lenses. This means they gradually transition from one visual focus area to another, without distinct separations between distance, middle, and close vision sections of the lenses.