New Glasses could mean any of the following scenarios:
You have been prescribed spectacles for the first time, and you just had your first pair of spectacles
Your prescription has changed, and you have just gotten a new pair of spectacles as per the new, changed prescription
You have gotten a new spectacle with the same prescription as your existing spectacles.
In each of these scenarios, the experiences might be different. Here, we shall discuss what adjustment issues you may experience and how you could get over them to adapt to your new spectacles as early as possible.
How Long Does It Take to Get Used to New Glasses?
1. You have been advised powered spectacles for the first time:
- If you have been prescribed minus power for the first time, then, in most likelihood, you would adapt very quickly without any issues. Sometimes, you may get a slight headache or tired feeling in the eyes after a few minutes to a few hours of using the new spectacles, then give yourselves a break. If the problem persists for more than a week, you should go back to confirm if the numbers prescribed to you are not too strong. It is a common error that happens while prescribing minus powers. This is also possible if you are nearing your forties and have been prescribed minus power without evaluating your near vision with the minus power. A person with minus-powered spectacles the first time may feel that things are slightly brighter or sharper than usual. That can take a few minutes to a couple of days to get used to.
- If you have been prescribed plus power for the first time, you may more often experience blurred vision and headache after a few minutes to a few hours of using the spectacles. It is because, in most young people, the internal muscles of the eyes compensate for the plus power to a good extent. The plus power spectacles are supposed to relax these eye muscles. It takes some time for the muscles to relax; hence, there is an initial period of blurred vision and headache. As the eye muscles start relaxing, gradually over 1 to 7 days, the eyes adapt very well to the spectacles. However, if the blurred vision persists for more than seven days, you should revisit your eye care practitioner to reevaluate your prescription.
- If you have been prescribed cylindrical or astigmatic powered spectacles for the first time, then you may experience occasional headaches, tired eyes or spatial disorientation; for example, the stairs or the floor may look crooked, the edges of a paper or screen look slanted, the steering of a vehicle looks elevated or depressed. To adapt to these spectacles, start with shorter durations of 20-30 minutes at stationary tasks like watching television or working on digital devices for the first week. Gradually increase the duration as you feel more comfortable with the stationary tasks. In the second week, move indoors with the new spectacles, avoiding the stairs. In the third week, the eyes would be adapted enough to use spectacles while climbing up and down the stairs at home. By the fourth week, you should also be able to use your new, cylindrical-powered spectacles for driving around.
- If you have been advised to read spectacles for the first time and get only near-vision spectacles, then the most common mistake is looking in the distance through the near-vision spectacles. This causes blurry vision in the distance and headaches. Another adaptation you need to make with near-vision spectacles is that you may need to hold the reading or near objects a little closer than you have become habituated to. When the near vision power develops, one usually feels better by keeping the reading material or near objects a little further away from the eyes. This becomes a habit until properly prescribed near vision spectacles.
Near vision spectacles make viewing at a normal reading distance or about one hand’s distance of 12-14 inches comfortable. Hence, one may have to adapt by changing the habit of keeping things away from the eyes. It is a common mistake that while prescribing near vision spectacles, patients hold reading charts too near, or the ECP uses a standard distance for all patients to assess near vision. One should ideally get near vision spectacles prescribed for their habitual working distance. One’s arm’s length, table distance and preference to keep reading material closer or further away, as well as one’s office settings like desktops or laptops, are factors to be considered.
- If you have been prescribed progressive spectacles for the first time, then there are a few adaptive steps that will help you get completely habituated to your new spectacles fast:
- Understand that at your eye level is the distance vision. As you lower the eyes, you will come across the intermediate zone that carries the power for mid-distances, while the lowermost part of your spectacles contains the near vision zone for your reading. As a habit, we tend to drop our heads to read. But with progressive spectacles, resist the urge to drop your head but instead, consciously, you have to move your eyes to find and see through the appropriate zone of vision required for the distance you are attempting to view. It takes hardly a day to a week to train the eye-head muscle coordination to use your spectacles effectively.
- Try to avoid moving your eyes to look at the sides. Move the neck instead. Especially while reversing the car, use the rearview mirrors or camera instead of looking over the shoulder.While walking down the stairs, drop the head a little bit till you can see your toes clearly and then climb down.
If there are headaches or vision issues more than a week after you start with your new spectacles, then there could be an issue with the strength of the power prescribed and the accuracy of the power in the lenses. The most common error with prescription spectacles bought online is the pupil distance and the height of the optical centre at which the lenses are fitted. Sometimes, spectacle frames may require adjustment of the pantoscopic angle, the wrap of the frame.
2. Your prescription power has changed, and you started with a new pair of spectacles with the new powers:
- If you have minus powers and your power has been increased, it takes a day or two to adapt to unless you are nearing your forties. In such cases, you may feel that near vision is either slightly blurred or uncomfortable with only a single vision, higher minus powers. If the complaint persists for more than a week, visit your ECP to reevaluate the powers and evaluate near vision with new powers. If you are prescribed a lesser minus power than what you are using, the vision may be slightly blurred, and it may take a couple of days for the eyes to relax and stabilise. However, more than seven days of vision issues require a revisit to the ECP.
- If you have plus power and you have been prescribed a higher plus, it usually adapts well within a day or so. Sometimes objects may appear closer or a little larger than usual. But these symptoms settle down in a day or two. If your plus power has decreased, it may feel a little strenuous, especially for near vision. If the headache, eye strain or blurriness at near persists for more than a week, you should get a recheck of the powers done.
- If your reading powers have increased, you may feel that vision is better holding things closer to the eyes. If that is not practical for your habituated working distance, you should consult your ECP and work out a more appropriate prescription for your work and desk needs.
- If your cylinder power is increased without changing the axis, it may take a week to ten days to get used to. If there is eye strain or headaches, then do get your powers reevaluated after ten days.
- If your cylindrical axis changes, you may have spatial disorientation, blurred vision, eyestrain or headaches for the first few days. Give yourselves a break when the headache or eye strain increases. This should settle in 7-10 days. If the symptoms persist, your powers and spectacles need to be rechecked.
- Change in the prescription of progressive lenses: any change in distance or near or both prescription powers in progressive lenses may need an adaptation time of about 7-10 days. Beyond that, you should get both the spectacles and powers rechecked. Also, discuss the symptoms in detail with the optometrist. Sometimes, minor alignments can solve a seemingly big problem.
3. If You have gotten a new pair of spectacles with the same prescription as your existing spectacles:
In today’s world, with multitudes of selections available in spectacle frames, one wants to experiment with looks and often buys spectacle frames that are quite diverse. In an ideal world, this should have little bearing on the result regarding vision. However, sometimes switching between frames of very different sizes and shapes can have a slight difference in vision. This is because larger shapes and oversized frames tend to sit a little further away from the eyes than smaller frames. As a result, the optical effect of the lenses of the same power between the two scenarios is different. This difference may be perceptible sometimes and can take a while to get used to.
Sometimes, the wrap and pantoscopic angle need to be adjusted to achieve the same optical effect as the spectacles one is habituated to.
But before proceeding to such adjustments, it is important to verify that the optical centres of the two lenses are fitted, in the new frame, at the same heights relational to the pupil centres as in the older frame. Also, the pupillary distances (PD) should be the same in the old and new frames. Ideally, one should have PD for each eye measured individually since the combined interpupillary distance can sometimes be unreliable if the monocular PD is different in each eye.
Adjustments of temple length, the length to bend, and the curve behind the ears must be individualised for each face so that the frame does not slip off the nose frequently and feels comfortable.
It may not be possible to adjust in plastic frames, but in metal frames, alignment of the nose pads such that the weight is evenly spread over as large an area as possible also makes the frame more comfortable. In addition, changing nose pads to larger sizes or a softer material may help achieve comfort.
5 Tips for Adjusting to Your New Glasses
Wearing glasses for the first time can be a little daunting, but don’t worry; we’re here to help. Here are five tips to help you adjust to your new glasses:
- Be patient. It may take a little while to get used to your new glasses. So relax and give yourself some time to adjust.
- Start slow. Don’t wear your glasses for too long at first. Instead, start wearing them for an hour or two and then gradually increase the amount of time you wear them.
- Get used to the feeling. Your glasses will feel different on your face, but don’t worry; you’ll get used to them in no time.
- Stay hydrated. When you first start wearing your glasses, it’s important to stay hydrated. It will help your eyes adjust more quickly.
- Wear sunglasses. Protect your eyes from the sun by wearing sunglasses when you’re not wearing your glasses.
Are There Any Exercises You Can Do to Help You Get Used to Your New Glasses?
When you first get your new glasses, it’s natural to feel some anxiety. After all, you’re suddenly seeing the world in a whole new way. But don’t worry—getting used to your new glasses won’t take long. You might be wondering if there are any exercises you can do to help you get used to your new glasses. The good news is, there are! And they’re simple.
- Blink rapidly for about 20 seconds, then close your eyes and relax for 20 seconds. Repeat this five times.
- Another great exercise is to close your eyes and focus on an object in the distance. Hold that object in your mind for a minute, and then open your eyes and look at it.
Do these exercises a few times a day, and you’ll start to train your eyes to focus on objects more clearly.
What Should You Do if You’re Still Not Comfortable With Your New Glasses?
Not everyone adjusts to their new glasses right away. It can take a bit of time to get used to their feel, the weight on your nose, and the different way everything looks. If you’re just not comfortable with your new glasses, here are a few things you can do:
Try a different frame style
Maybe the ones you picked out are not the right fit for you.
Take a break from your glasses
If you’re struggling to get used to them, taking a break for a little while is okay. Just make sure you go back to wearing them eventually!
Talk to your optometrist
They may be able to adjust the prescription slightly to make them more comfortable for you.
What Are Some Common Myths About Getting Used to New Glasses?
You may have heard that getting used to new glasses takes about a week. But is that true? Let’s examine some of the most common myths about getting used to new glasses.
Myth #1: You must give up your old glasses as soon as you get new ones.
This one is false. You should continue wearing your old glasses until your new ones are properly fitted. Then, if something goes wrong with your new glasses, you’ll have a backup pair. However, if the prescription powers have changed, then, once you are adapted to the new powers, you should get the numbers changed in the older frames too.
Myth #2: You’ll never get used to your new glasses.
This is not true. With patience and perseverance, you’ll be able to adjust to your new glasses in no time.
Myth #3: You have to wait a week before you can start wearing your new glasses.
This one is partially true. Most genuine prescription changes are well accepted by the eyes. However, some need time for the eyes to adapt to while some new spectacles need only some adjustments or alignments. But within 7-10 days if the new spectacles are still not comfortable then you should definitely consider replacing them after proper re-evaluation.
Myth #4: Glasses always take a long time to get used to.
False! In many cases, glasses can be adjusted very quickly. It just depends on the person and how their eyes and brain adapt to the change. In any case if it’s taking more than 10 days, then you should get both your prescription as well as the spectacles re-checked.
It can take a little time to get used to your new glasses, but with a little effort and these handy tips, you’ll be able to adjust quickly and start enjoying your clear vision.
Make sure to give yourself time to get used to your new glasses. It’s not unusual to feel like your eyes are tired or strained initially. Try wearing your glasses for a few hours at a time and gradually increase the amount of time you wear them each day.
If you’re still having trouble adjusting, talk to your eye doctor about some exercises you can do to help speed up the process. And lastly, don’t forget to take care of your new glasses by using a good quality lens cleaner and storing them in a safe place when you’re not wearing them.
What are the symptoms of adjusting to new glasses?
When you get new glasses, it can take some time to get used to them. Your eyes may be sore and itchy at first, and you may not be able to see as well as you would like. These symptoms will usually improve as your eyes adjust to your glasses.
Symptoms you may experience include:
- Itchy, dry eyes
- Blurred vision
- Tearing eyes
- Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
- Sore, strained muscles in the back of your neck and your temples
- A feeling of pressure in your head
If you’re feeling any of these symptoms, take a break from whatever you’re doing and give your eyes some rest.
What are the symptoms of adjusting to new glasses?
Most eye care professionals will inform you that a normal change in your glasses prescription will usually take two to three days to adjust to. Still, in some uncommon circumstances, the adjustment period could continue for up to two weeks. Consult your eye doctor if your eyes have not adjusted completely after two or three days. They can ask you to come in to examine your eyes or spectacles.
How to adjust to new glasses without the pain?
Even though getting used to your new glasses can take some time, you should be able to do so in about a week or two. You can also adhere to a few simple tips to feel comfortable using your new glasses:
- Avoid using your old glasses. Provide rest to your eyes whenever needed throughout the day.
- For extended computer use, choose anti-reflective lenses.
- Ensure that your eyewear is fitted properly.
- Visit an eye doctor if the problem continues even after a week.