How Do I Know If I Need Prescription Spectacles?

January 30, 2024

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Ever wondered if those minor vision issues mean you need prescription spectacles? It’s a question that might flicker through your mind when street signs become a blur or when the evening drive feels more challenging than it used to be.

To determine if you need prescription spectacles, look for signs like difficulty reading, frequent squinting, headaches, blurry vision, or challenges seeing at night, and consult an eye care professional for a comprehensive eye exam.

I’m Damon Ezekiel, and alongside my colleague Melanie, a dedicated optical dispenser in our team, we bring decades of experience to your eye care. We’re here to help you see the world more clearly.

There’s a common misconception that spectacles are only for those with severe vision problems. However, many of our patients are surprised to find that even mild changes in vision can significantly benefit from correction.

Take, for instance, David a 32 year old mining industry worker, who came in for a routine check-up, not realizing that the headaches and difficulty reading were due to a slight vision change—a situation easily remedied with the right spectacles.

Ignoring subtle vision changes can lead to more than just the occasional frown or squint—it can affect your daily activities and overall quality of life. This is why paying attention to those changes and addressing them promptly is crucial.

And remember, regular comprehensive eye health checks are vital, especially as we grow older.

If you’re curious to know more or if you’re ready to take the next step in ensuring your vision is the best it can be, why not book an appointment with us at Ezekiel Eyes? Or, keep reading to understand more about prescription spectacles and how they could be the missing piece to your visual clarity.

 

Signs You Need Prescription Spectacles

If you’ve reached a point where you are thinking about whether you need glasses, it’s essential to understand that our eyes communicate through symptoms that shouldn’t be overlooked. At Ezekiel Eyes, we often see adults who could greatly benefit from a simple pair of prescription spectacles, and it all starts with recognizing the signs.

Night Blindness

When the sun sets, do you find it more challenging to see? If driving at night or moving around in dimly lit spaces feels daunting, it might be a sign of night blindness. This difficulty in low light conditions can be an early indicator of vision problems that warrant a thorough eye examination.

Squinting to See Clearly

If you catch yourself squinting to view objects clearly, it’s more than just a fleeting issue. Frequent squinting can be a symptom of uncorrected vision issues, such as nearsightedness or farsightedness. It’s your eyes’ way of trying to focus and often a sign that glasses could help.

Rubbing Your Eyes Often

Notice yourself rubbing your eyes more than usual? It’s a common response to eye fatigue, and while it can be due to various reasons, it often relates to the need for vision correction. Frequent eye rubbing can be your body’s way of trying to clear or adjust your vision.

Blurry or Double Vision

Whether it’s the menu at your favorite cafe or the street signs on your commute, difficulty focusing on objects near or far can be a telltale sign. Blurry vision or double vision is one of the most straightforward indicators that corrective lenses might be necessary.

Regular Headaches

Lastly, if headaches have become a regular unwelcome guest, particularly after tasks like reading, computer work, or any activity that requires visual concentration, it could relate to eye strain. Our eyes are not meant to hurt, and persistent headaches can be a sign that your vision needs attention.

At Ezekiel Eyes, understanding these symptoms is just the beginning. We’re dedicated to providing comprehensive eye exams that get to the root of these issues. If any of these signs resonate with you, consider booking an appointment. It’s not just about seeing better; it’s about living with comfort and clarity.

Watch the following video to learn more about the tell-tale signs that you need prescription spectacles.

 

 

 

Understanding Common Eye Conditions

As an experienced optometrist, I’ve encountered numerous cases where the right pair of glasses has made a world of difference to our patient. Let’s explore some of these conditions that often lead individuals to visit us at Ezekiel Eyes.

Astigmatism

Astigmatism is a condition where the eye’s cornea or lens isn’t perfectly round, causing blurred or distorted vision at all distances. Symptoms can include headaches, eye strain, and difficulty driving at night. Prescription glasses with specially-designed lenses help correct the way light passes through the eye, providing clear vision and relief from the discomfort.

Early Stage Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a progressive eye disease where the normally round cornea thins and begins to bulge into a cone-like shape, distorting vision. In its early stages, mild keratoconus can often be corrected with glasses, compensating for the cornea’s irregular shape and improving vision.

Nearsightedness (Myopia)

Myopia is a common vision condition where distant objects appear blurry while close ones are clear. It’s caused by the eye shape being too long or the corneal curve being too steep. Glasses correct myopia by adjusting the focal point onto the retina, allowing you to see distant objects more clearly.

Farsightedness (Hyperopia)

Hyperopia, or farsightedness, is the opposite of myopia. Close objects may be blurry while distant ones are clear. This occurs when the eye shape is too short or the cornea is too flat. Spectacle lenses for hyperopia bring the image forward onto the retina, clarifying near vision.

Presbyopia

As we age we might start to notice difficulty focusing on close up objects. This condition is called presbyopia and is a normal part of aging and results from the hardening of the crystalline lens inside our eyes. Reading glasses, bifocals or multifocal spectacles are common corrective measures, helping to focus on the tasks at hand.

At Ezekiel Eyes, we utilise comprehensive eye examinations to diagnose these conditions accurately. With advanced testing equipment and expertise, we can determine the specific correction needed for your prescription spectacles. If you’re experiencing symptoms that hinder your daily activities, it might be time for a detailed eye exam. Ensuring your vision is corrected not only enhances your quality of life but also helps maintain your overall eye health.

 

Perth prescription spectacles.

Alternatives to Prescription Spectacles

At Ezekiel Eyes, we understand that glasses might not be everyone’s preference or the best solution for every lifestyle. Here’s a brief look at other vision correction options:

Contact Lenses

Contact lenses offer freedom from glasses, providing a full field of unobstructed vision, which is ideal for sports and physical activities. They come in various types, including daily disposables, extended wear, and multifocal designs. However, contacts require good hygiene practices to avoid infections and might not be suitable for those with very dry or sensitive eyes.

Ortho-K (Orthokeratology)

Ortho-K involves wearing specially designed contact lenses overnight that temporarily reshape the cornea, allowing clear vision during the day without the need for spectacles or contacts. It’s a reversible alternative, but it requires consistent nightly use, and not everyone is a candidate for this type of correction.

Lasik Surgery

Lasik surgery can permanently correct certain vision issues, reducing or eliminating the need for glasses or contacts. It’s a quick procedure with a relatively short recovery time. However, it’s a surgical intervention with its risks and potential side effects, and not all vision problems can be corrected with Lasik. It’s also not suitable for everyone, and a thorough examination is required to determine eligibility.

At Ezekiel Eyes, we’re here to discuss these options in-depth, weighing the pros and cons based on your specific needs, lifestyle, and eye health. Our commitment is to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about your vision correction options. Whether you choose spectacles, contact lenses, Ortho-K, or surgery, we will guide you through the process and support you in achieving the best possible outcome for your vision.

 

Prescription spectacles Perth, Western Australia.

The Importance of Comprehensive Eye Exams

The cornerstone of eye care is the comprehensive eye exam. It’s not just about finding the right prescription; it’s about ensuring your eyes are healthy and functioning at their best. At Ezekiel Eyes, we emphasise the critical role that regular eye exams play—not only in diagnosing your vision prescription but also in assessing the overall health of your eyes.

During an eye exam, expect a thorough process that evaluates much more than just how clearly you can see. We start by discussing your health and vision history, followed by tests to determine how well you see at various distances. This includes reading from an eye chart, which helps us pinpoint the exact prescription needed to correct any refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, astigmatism and or presbyopia.

A thorough eye exam goes beyond just finding the right prescription. We also:

  • Examine your eye coordination and muscle control to ensure your eyes are working together effectively.
  • Check your peripheral vision, which can help uncover health issues you might not even be aware of.
  • Assess the front of your eye with a slit-lamp examination, giving us a clear view of your cornea, iris, and lens.
  • Look inside your eye with specialized equipment to check the retina and optic nerve for signs of eye conditions like glaucoma, macula degeneration, or diabetic retinopathy.

These comprehensive evaluations are crucial. They can detect early signs of eye conditions that could have significant impacts if left untreated. Regular exams allow for early intervention, which is often key to maintaining good vision and eye health.

At Ezekiel Eyes, we’re committed to providing detailed eye exams that ensure you leave with a precise understanding of your eye health and vision needs. We’re here to answer your questions and provide you with the best care possible. So, if it’s been a while since your last eye check, or if you’ve never had one, now is the time to take charge of your eye health. Let’s work together to keep your vision clear and your eyes healthy for years to come.

The following data illustrates how common prescription spectacle use has become in today’s society.

Percentage Description
64% Percentage of adults use eyeglasses
19% Percentage of adults use contact lenses
3% Percentage of adults use prescription sunglasses only

Table data from: Vision Council of America 2006; Jobson Research 2005; Johnson and Johnson Study 2006
https://www.mesvision.com/includes/pdf_Broker/MESVision%20Facts%20and%20Statistics.pdf

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the first signs of needing spectacles?

The first signs that you might need glasses can include difficulty reading small print, having to squint to see clearly, headaches after visual tasks, or struggling to see well at night. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s a good idea to get your eyes checked.

Can too much screen time cause blurry vision?

Prolonged screen time can lead to what we call ‘digital eye strain,’ which can cause symptoms like blurry vision, dry eyes, and headaches. This is due to less blinking while using screens and prolonged focus on a close object, leading to eye fatigue. Taking regular breaks and ensuring proper lighting can help alleviate these symptoms.

Is it OK to wear spectacles that are not your prescription?

Wearing spectacles that are not your prescription is not recommended. Incorrect prescriptions can cause eye strain, headaches, or dizziness. It’s important to wear spectacles that are specifically tailored to your vision needs to avoid discomfort or worsening vision issues.

Will my eyesight get worse if I don’t wear spectacles?

Not wearing spectacles when you need them can lead to eye strain and might make tasks like reading or driving more difficult, but it generally doesn’t cause your eyesight to worsen. Spectacles are meant to help you see better and reduce discomfort, so it’s beneficial to wear them as prescribed.

Conclusion

Understanding when you might need spectacles is more than just reacting to a bit of squinting or the occasional headache. It’s about paying attention to your vision, the subtle changes, and how they affect your daily life.

Ignoring these small signs, like difficulty reading signs at night or the strain in your eyes after a long day at the computer, can lead to bigger problems down the road. It’s not just about blurry vision or missing out on the fine print; it’s about your overall eye health and the quality of life that good vision brings.

Don’t wait until these minor annoyances become major hurdles. Our team, including Rhiannon, Melanie and myself, are here to offer personalized solutions for your vision needs.

Booking an appointment is straightforward. Just give us a call at (08) 9386 3620 or click on the “Book an Appointment” button on our website. It’s a small step that could make a big difference in your life.

optometrist-damon-ezekiel

In addition to owning and managing Ezekiel Eyes, Damon is a contact lens consultant to various research organisations. He regularly lectures and conducts workshops in contact lens practice throughout Australia, Asia and the United States. Damon graduated from the University of NSW with a Bachelor of Optometry in 1989. He is now married with two children and enjoys running, hockey, swimming, piano, travelling and trekking.

Damon’s professional associations include:
President of the International Society of Contact Lens Specialists
Practising Fellow of the Scleral Lens Education Society
Fellow of the Cornea & Contact Lens Society of Australia
Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry
Member of Optometry Australia
Member of the Orthokeratology Society of Australia
Member of Alcon Australia advisory panel