Specsavers Eyewear Advice Centre

in association with SAGA

Varifocals explained

Specsavers Everyone over the age of 45 suffers from symptoms of presbyopia, also known as tired eyesight. But help is at hand to correct your vision.

For clear sight, the rays of light entering your eye need to be precisely focused on the retina, at the back of the eye. The focusing power depends on the elasticity of the natural lens. This is gradually lost as people age, resulting in a slow decrease in the ability of the eye to focus on nearby objects.

To rectify this you need a reading addition to your glasses prescription, to help your eyes focus at close distances. Varifocals are spectacle lenses with no visible line, used to correct vision for distance, arm's length and close-up viewing. The name comes from the term "variable focus" and they have a gradual change in power from top to bottom, allowing you to see clearly at all distances with just one pair of glasses. Not to be confused with bifocals, they combine distance, arm's length and near vision in one lens.

Varifocals offer many practical benefits. With all vision distances included in one pair of glasses, there is no need to remove your spectacles either for reading or for seeing longer distances, so they are less likely to be scratched, broken or lost.

Q & A

Q. Are varifocals expensive?

A. They need not be. At Specsavers, we pride ourselves on our competitive prices. We offer different kinds of varifocals to suit any budget.

Q. How do I know which varifocals are right for me?

A. There are many types of varifocal lenses, with variations in the area allocated for near, arm's length and distance vision. Some have wider reading areas for example, while others are designed with a greater emphasis on distance vision. Experienced Specsavers dispensing staff will guide you in your choice, basing their recommendations on your lifestyle and usage of your glasses. Just ask in store for further details.

Q. Can I select any frame when choosing varifocals?

A. Specially trained dispensing staff will also be able to guide you on frame styles and sizes suitable for your preferred varifocal type. At Specsavers we have an extensive range of glasses frames suitable for varifocal lenses, and if you opt for our tailor-made range you can chose any frame style

To book an appointment for an eye examination or to find your nearest Specsavers, please call 0800 068 0241 or log onto www.specsavers.co.uk.