Sailing with prescription lenses - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 32 Old 02-09-2012 Thread Starter
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Sailing with prescription lenses

I've worn glasses since I was six. My prescription is strong (-6.75R -6.25L) but has been stable for 20 years. I'm old enough that my arms are starting to get too short. *grin* I've been prescribed progressives. I tried contacts in the past and they simply don't work for me, so they aren't an option.

For the group, I'm interested in people that sail with progressives. Do you get progressive sunglasses or use single-vision?

Anyone gotten the mid-vision emphasis computer glasses?

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post #2 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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I also have a very strong prescription for my glasses. And contacts don't work for me as well. What I have is a pair of wraparound sunglasses (highly polarized and amber for low light) that take an insert of my prescription.

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post #3 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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Lasik surgery maybe? I'm told the big downside to the surgery is the propensity to cause the opposite problem you are correcting. Fix near sightedness and cause far sightedness, for example. If you are now getting far sighted anyway, you really can't lose. Then you only need reading glasses around, which you can and will buy by the 12 pack.


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post #4 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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My prescription was even worse than yours and I had all sorts of problem with progessives since i kept losing focus. The doctor said the problem was that my eyes were so bad that the progressive part of the lens was most of the lens and sweet spot in the middle was tiny. I used ordinary bifocals for many years. I was starting to develop cataracts and had a choice. If I wanted the free government cataract operation I could wait for several years until I needed the operation and go for that. Or, I could get new lenses implanted that fixed the developing cataracts but also were prescription. I decided on the latter approach ($7000) because I was heading off for a few years of sailing and after one winter in the Caribbean I realized that glasses were annoying with spray and salt. The result is about 90% positive. I can see, at all distances, extremely well, which is a remarkable thing after more than 50 years of wearing glasses full-time. Only downside is that my night vision is not as good as before. Don't know if this is a side-effect of laser surgery or if there are others, but worth asking.
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post #5 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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I have had some major eye problems with my right eye had several surgerys as well as Lasix and still in the 20/400 range...as well as "short arm syndrome"...

Yep, Lasik sucks overcorrected to the opposite and I ended up with a plastic lens (in eye) I tried contacts but eyes have bad reaction to them (dry eye)

I wear progressives and do have "computer enhancement" and I love them for "overall/everyday" usage...(Although I do have SV mid and SV reading for when I need to concentrate/long period usage)

I went with the Transitions "Extra" to get a dark enough sun shade as the regular Transitions just weren't doing it for me...

I would love to get "another" pair of glasses (dedicated precription sun) but they are a bit expensive in the progressive and the big bulky "old guy (no offence) over the top" units are not for me..

Course I will get "whiney" when I'm leaning over to secure a bumper or tie a dock line and they fall in the drink, but that's life with glasses...In which case I might just have to go with a "Patch" like Captin Ron..
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post #6 of 32 Old 02-09-2012 Thread Starter
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Thanks to all so far. Thanks in particular to killarney_sailor. Night vision is critical for me, as is the prospect for light bloom. Your comment has the subject on my list of notes to follow up. Thanks. My family does have a history of cataracts but it usually hits us in mid-80s. I have a couple of decades before that.

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post #7 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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I, like you, have tried the contacts and progressive (dual and triple)...and found them horrible for use in the real world....IF you can keep your glasses in one spot, and they are adjusted to that spot...things work as advertised...but any ever so slight movement, even that of scrunching your nose or squinting, let alone a hat or some wind...plays havoc with your vision.

I tried them for weeks, with adjustments every other day and found them unusable. I went to a pair of conventional bifocals and a separate pair of bifocals to use the computer or read. I really need a third pair for closeup stuff...but simply can not afford that third pair. Each of my sets of lens are around $400 once you factor in the high index, couple of coatings, etc...then a frame ( I re use mine as often as possible)..the last pair of regular were almost $1K, the computer ones about half, as I reused an old frame.

I have never been able to tolerate prescription sunglasses and even worse with progressive...the lens are so sensitive that the sun coating altered the Rx and light hitting the eyes. Others will post on sunglasses.

While sailing, I do keep a backup pair below, and wear a choker to keep them around my neck (again a royal pain in the tush). You will find that the progressives are much less tolerant of salt and dried crud from splashing and i found the coatings "soft" and scratched much easier than the conventional lens.

YMMV
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post #8 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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I have had a great experience with them sailing. I have progressives including transitions. I thought they would be terrible and worried about the light to dark adjustment. One critical thing is having a large lense - width and height. If you fail to have it at least 18mm, you are screwed. My distance is good but reading terrible. When they make the glasses they automatically give you the mid-range which is what I critically needed to read the instrument panels. The reading glasses didn't do it and I got tired of switching glasses. You need a good strap on them and a strong frame. I also asked a number of different opticians about the best manufacturer of progressive lenses. Unfortunately, I don't remember which I ended up with but it makes a difference. Not all progressive lenses are the same... this where a good optician comes in. Also, you can't use them to read in bed. For that, I have a separate, less expensive pair.

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post #9 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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I am a 24/400 bifocal and have reached to there will always be a comprise in the prescription its just a matter of picking the one i want i still get ALL glass with a safety glass rating ,which takes a bit of time now BUT i seen enough glass and plastic lenses shatter

The wife had laser it required a lot of follow up and she still needs reading glasses anyway

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post #10 of 32 Old 02-09-2012
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Auspicious-
Lasik has a real risk of loss of contrast and "bloom" at night. I also need an rx and I've probably tried everything, there's no one perfect solution. My usual glasses are progressive with photosensitive tint, so "one size fits all" or none as the case may be. They work well enough at arm's length but I still prefer to take take them off for reading up close.
I've also found a compromise in contact lenses (no need to wipe salt spray, which scratches plastic unless you wet wipe then dry) with my choice of sunglasses over them--and you cna buy off the shelf, sunglasses with READERS added into them these days. $15 and up at flea markets and drugstores. I have a plastic (like "colorforms") reader set on some of my sunglasses, folks don't believe how crisp they are unless they try them, then they mistake them for glass lenses.
So one solution is whatever you use, buy the plastic stick-on readers and add them. If for no other reason than beause you can position them as high or as low as you want, get it where it works for you, and THEN tell the optician "Make my bifocals THIS WAY this is how I like it."
As they say in real estate, position is everything. (Or is that the Kama Sutra?)

The progressives (Varilux) with sun tint never get as dark as real sniper's sunglasses, they're a compromise. And they're always slow to turn. Costco sells another company's version for about 1/2 price, and as I explained to my optician, I've done business with him for a long time, I want to keep doing business with him, but the prices...And yes, he readily agreed to nearly meet the discounter's prices--on the same branded lenses.

What did Shakespeare say? A pox on all their houses? All you can do is try the options. the new contact lenses are almost like water, very comfortable. $75 appointment, free trail pair, $30 for the colorforms to add to your favorite non-rx sunglasses...it's an experiment.
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