Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Needing Bifocals - The Options I Considered

I really hate writing this post:-). My eye doctor told me that I am fortunate to have gone until last year without needing reading glasses. Since I am near sighted, I can read fine without glasses or contacts. However, once I correct to 20/20 distance vision, I need reading glasses. This year I went the next step, bifocals, which made me grimace a bit :-) I was still thinking about the type that had the visible half moon lens in the lower half with the distinctive line in the middle.

Actually, the options for bifocals have become a lot better recently. Here are the options I considered with the prices from Costco:
  • No-line bifocal glasses. The eyeglass industry has figured out that glasses that look like bifocals are not appealing. They've created no-line bifocals that make an invisible transition from distance to near sight. While it still takes time to get used to looking in different areas, bifocal lenses provide a single all purpose set of glasses. The total cost was $245, with about $65 being the cost for the bifocal feature and $60 for the frames.

    The optician warned me about a short adjustment period. Apparently, the no-line bifocal feature can sometimes cause people to misjudge steps; However, I was lucky and was able to use the glasses immediately without any problems.

  • Bifocal contacts. After trying a test pair from the Costco optometrist, I decided to purchase a year's supply of Bausch & Lomb PureVision multi-focal contacts at about $190. As it was explained to me, these contacts put the bifocal feature in the center of the contact. Previously, the technology was concentric circles of different power. It seems the brain can sort out the near and far images and provide an appropriate picture in the brain. Amazing.

    Again, I was fortunate that my adjustment time to the new lenses was relatively fast.

  • Although I am happy with the bifocal options, I will also continue to use my initial approach of single vision contacts ($118 per year for 8 packs of Acuvue2) with reading glasses ($18 for three). Periodically, Costco will have $10 coupons (for 4 packages) and $30 rebate for 8 packages to lower the cost to $68 per year for Acuvue2 single vision contacts.

    For more on Ideas You Can Use , check back every Tuesday for a new segment.

    Photo Credit: morgueFile.com, Andrea Church

    This is not financial or medical advice. Please consult a professional advisor.
    Copyright © 2007 Achievement Catalyst, LLC

    1 comment:

    andy2 said...

    Check out zennioptical.com too. I got a cheap pair from there and they have been great. A normal, single vision pair on a cheap frame was 8$ total. Clark Howard (consumer radio guy) recommends them too. I'm a big fan. I'm pretty sure they have all the fancy options and lenses too.