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Bifocal vs. Progressive lenses

Often times, when leaving the office you'll get a prescription for glasses. Patients often wonder what it all means. The first number is considered the sphere and points to see if you're near or far sighted. The second number is astigmatism. A simple analogy is normally the eye is like a circle but in astigmatism it is shaped like a football which causes blurriness. Afterwards they may be an area for near vision usually this is for patients over the age of 40.

Once you understand your prescription, it is easier to pick what type of lenses you need. For those with a simple prescription with no reading vision, a simple far lens will work great. If the patient needs reading vision, bifocals or progressives are good options. Bifocals usually have a line with the lens below the line being for reading. Progressive lens have a gradual change as the patient looks down. This is helpful for those patients who want middle vision as well as near vision in their glasses.  

 The most important thing is to talk to your doctor about your prescription so you can make proper recommendations. Here in the Bronx at South Bronx Eyes, the doctor will take his time to explain the intricacy of what kind of glasses you need.


David Alevi MD

David Alevi is a board certified corneal specialist and founder of South Bronx Eyes.
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