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How to Choose the Best Lenses

When buying eyeglasses, the frame you choose is important to both your appearance and your comfort when wearing glasses. But the eyeglass lenses you choose influence four factors: appearance, comfort, vision and safety.

A common mistake people often make when buying eyeglasses is not spending enough time considering their choices of eyeglass lens materials, designs and coatings. Here are some things to consider when selecting lenses.

Lens Materials

Glass lenses – While popular in the early days they’re rarely used now since they’re heavy and easy to break.

Plastic Lenses - Because of its light weight (about half the weight of glass), low cost and excellent optical qualities, plastic remains a popular material for eyeglass lenses even today.

Polycarbonate lenses - Polycarbonate is lighter and significantly more impact-resistant than plastic, making it a preferred material for children's eyewear, safety glasses and sports eyewear.

High-index plastic lenses - These lenses are thinner and lighter than plastic lenses because they have a higher index of refraction.

Eyeglass Lens Treatments

For the most comfortable, durable and best-looking glasses, the following lens treatments should be considered essential:

Anti-scratch coating - Most of today's modern anti-scratch coatings (also called scratch coats or hard coats) can make your eyeglass lenses nearly as scratch-resistant as glass.

Anti-reflective coating - Anti-reflective (AR) coatings eliminate reflections in lenses that reduce contrast and clarity, especially at night. They also make your lenses nearly invisible, so you can make better eye contact and you and others aren't distracted by reflections in your lenses. AR-coated lenses are also much less likely to have glare spots in photographs.

UV-blocking treatment - Cumulative exposure to the sun's harmful UV radiation over a person's lifetime has been associated with age-related eye problems including cataracts and macular degeneration.

Photochromic treatment. This lens treatment enables eyeglass lenses to darken automatically in response to the sun's UV and high-energy visible (HEV) light rays, and then quickly return to clear (or nearly clear) when indoors. Photochromic lenses are available in virtually all lens materials and designs.

The lenses you choose for your eyeglasses — even more than frames — often will determine how happy you are with your eyewear.

Your eyecare practitioner can help you select the best lens with features you need as per your visual requirements. Visit your nearest eye care practitioner today!

For more information on How to Choose the Best Lenses visit Allaboutvision.com
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