Why I started wearing Multifocal Gas Permeable Lenses
In my late 40s I started wearing multifocal gas permeable lenses. I’ve been short sighted all my life. But I’ve never had problems with reading or doing close work without glasses. But I know many people do have problems with close vision as they get older. My main problem was that I was finding it difficult to use the computer with my contact lenses in. I had much the same problem with my phone. Vision was still great for distance, but the closer distances were’t working as well. I could see my phone or a book perfectly without the lenses as long as light levels were reasonably good. For using the computer I had to take my lenses out and put my glasses on (they weren’t varifocals, just ordinary prescription distance lenses).
How Multifocal Gas Permeable Lenses work
Multifocal gas permeable lenses do feel the same to wear as ordinary gas permeables, but they can deal with the differing levels of help my eyes needed for different distances. The lenses work by having different sections of the lenses geared to helping with different distances. Wearing them made it easier for reading and close work as some areas of the lenses had little or no prescription. Other parts were geared to intermediate help – around 60cm for the computers – or distance vision.
At any one point your brain sees three images, one for each of the focal lengths, but selects just one to show to you. It’s amazing how clever your brain is. I got on pretty well with these. Occasionally my brain would take a little while to focus in on the right image, but it usually adjusted quickly. When this happened I’d still be able to see, but I would lack some of the clarity e.g. I might struggle to read road signs at a distance. It was only a momentary problem and I never felt it created any danger. It is a bit disconcerting to begin with, but you quickly get to understand what is happening and have confidence in your own brain’s ability to sort the problem out.
I wore multifocal gas permeable lenses for about 4 years. There were few negatives aside from the general gas permeable lens issues. The main one was driving at night in them was a bit tricky. I think this was because my eyes were tired, but also because I experienced halos when driving in the dark. I don’t drive a lot in the dark, so it wasn’t a big issue and I did try to wear my glasses to drive instead when I could.
After wearing multifocal gas permeable lenses for about 4 years, I felt it was time for something different. I’d talked to my optician about laser surgery, but he suggested lens replacement surgery instead. I had a look at that and decided to go for multifocal lens replacement surgery. As I had already tried multifocal gas permeables, I had a good idea about how the multifocal aspect would work.