Varifocals! 🤓

I’m getting my first varifocals imminently :nerd_face: :roll_eyes:

Oh dear! I was actually told best practice with any form of dizziness is single lens, separate glasses for each function but found that impossible so stuck with bifocals I’ve had ‘for ever’ although have been told they probably don’t help the problem. Alot of non dizzy people cannot use them. High percentage. Good Luck. Helen

I’ve worn them for years and I like them. With your first pair, be patient. It took me quite a while to adapt to them.


Thanks Anna. I hope it doesn’t “stir the beast” as you might imagine!!

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I have worn varifocals for years but was told they could be 'aggravating ’ my vertigo so I wobbled off to the optician and got myself a separate pair of reading glasses and distance glasses. I hated them as I couldn’t read text on the computer screen with either of them and consequently went back to the optician and ordered a new pair of varifocals. Unfortunately I think the prescription is wrong for the new varifocals so I am now using my old pair!
I think my eyes were probably at their worst the day I had my eyes tested so should probably go back and get them done again. I do use the reading glasses for reading books, papers etc, but I use my varifocals for everything else. Maybe I should have checked out bi-focals @Onandon03 !

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Jan, you have every right to go back and get them to resolve that and improve the prescription to suit your eyes better.

My opticians told me I had 2 months from collection, but I just wonder if UK/EU law is a little more generous to the consumer so you really have longer.

For example, ‘Dixons’ will always tell you you have a 1 year guarantee for a new laptop, but in fact EU law grants you 2 years!!

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Good point! I would have gone back if it had been a faulty toaster or something so perhaps I should go back. Actually, no “perhaps” about it - I will go back!! :thinking:


Even if you’ve reached the ‘legal’ limit, ethically they have a responsibility.

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You wouldn’t be able to read a computer screen necessarily with reading glasses. In fact it’s unlikely. They are designed for a specific distance. Remember the optician asks you to read some text and asks you where you’d hold the card to do so. A PC screen is further away. Same would apply to reading music at a piano. My mother who was very short sighted always had her piano glasses as she called them, You can have glasses specifically for the computer. If your varifocals are not correct you should explain your medical condition to the optician and I expect they’ll give you partial retest to check. Who pays for replacement depends on result. Having said that I’ve always found opticians more than helpful with all and every query. Helen

Are varifocals the same as bifocals?

Prior to getting my bifocals about 8 years ago, I heard reports from friends who’d tried them and had such a hard time that they gave up on them.

Nevertheless, I went ahead with them, expecting a difficult transition. There was no difficulty at all in adjusting! I’d had a much harder time adjusting when I got a prism in one of my lenses.

All that to say that each person is different in how they’ll adjust.

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Almost identical: I think varifocals vary in strength gradually across the lens instead of having a step change (“lens within a lens”) like ‘bifocals’. The higher strength area is located in a similar position though.

Sorry James. Cannot agree with you there. Varifocals aren’t almost identical to bifocals. The principle is similar in that they are multi rather than single task specific,. Varifocals have patches of different strengths throughout the lens, many step changes. Bifocals are just the one step change with the stronger magnification at the lowest point of the len. It’s the multi steps involving constant refocussing that can prove a problem for many people, I do think recently the variafocal techniques have improved because I do know people who tried them and failed years ago recently tried again successfully. Techniques have obviously improved recently. Helen

I think that was what I was saying no? As in no big jump, just a more smooth transition to different strengths across the lens.

Hopefully they are improved!

I just cannot see them as ‘almost identical’. Wish they were then perhaps I’d be able to wear them. Bifocals can be a pain when trying to read noticeboards or look at a Desktop PC. I spent years screwing my neck back all day to do that. And single use glasses aren’t much use in this computerised age. Helen

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Yes I had considered having two but you are right that could get silly!

I find I run out of hands. You got two pairs of glasses and that’s ifyou are lucky enough to be able to locate the ‘other pair’ and whatever you are working on. I used to hang one pair on a rather fetching gold chain around my neck in the office, but don’t want to do that at home really and besides I gave the chain away ages ago in a fit of uncharacteristic generosity. Helen

Sorry for the delayed reply to this thread!
It’s most odd - my old pair of varifocals are better for the computer than the new pair so I do need to go back and get the the new pair checked. Considering that the new and old pair are supposed to be for reading, distance and PC work, it is annoying that I have to switch to my reading glasses when I have to read for a long period of time - books, reports etc. I have had varifocals for year and it is strange that just recently I am having problems with them. Jan x

From experience I’d say they may have got the distances incorrect. I’ve no idea of why and it seems really strange that it should be so but apparently the same number of units (ie strength) in reading glasses is more powerful in reading glasses than in bifocals, optician told me this when I was contemplating single use lens. Perhaps this also applies to varifocals. I don’t know. Seems odd to me. Bit like saying an inch in Falmouth is different from an inch in St Albans! I’d have thought these measurements units were universal. It could be your eyes have adapted to the extra magnification. I can never go back to my previous prescription once I’ve moved on.

[quote=“Janb, post:17, topic:16962, full:true”]

How ‘recently’ is recently? Since the MAV started? Since meds kicked in? Either can affect the brain and the brain ultimately governs what we see. Helen

it was before the MAV started - although I am now convinced I had been building up to the full attack for years without realising it. The optician did say the reading prescription was not much different, but like you once I have changed prescription I can’t normally go back to the old one.
I am wondering if the lenses in the new glasses are just too small to fit everything in effectively and I can’t get the right part of the lens when I am reading. Either way I really need to go back. :nerd_face: Jan x

UPDATE: they’re on! And I’ve not felt woozy yet! :nerd_face::grimacing::blush:. But yes you do feel less steady at certain points.

Wow, one thing I’ve really noticed is that you have have to hold your head up to see the computer screen. On my desk computer will be very good for my posture (although I’ve already had to lower the screen), although one downside is I notice I’m having to move my head up and down more and that explains why I’ve noticed people of a more mature age doing it and always wondered why! They are hunting for optimal focus! :slight_smile: