Children and Bifocals

April 10th, 2015

google images child's bifocal.images

Most of us have seen bifocals. We understand that as a person ages their eyes lose the ability to accommodate (adjust their focus to view close objects). This is the time of life when we begin to wear reading glasses or some form of multifocal, if we need correction for distance and near viewing. When a young child’s prescription calls for a bifocal it is usually for a very different reason and therefore the glasses must be designed and dispensed for the special requirements of the pediatric client.

When a doctor prescribes a bifocal for a child it us often because a child has strabismus. Bifocals are also used for amblyopia and anisometropia. Strabismus is when both eyes do not align simultaneously. One or both eyes will look in an opposing direction. The brain cannot fuse the signals coming from the divergent gazes into one image and will select one eye from which to accept signals and suppress the signals coming from the other. This creates amblyopia or lazy eye. Anisometropia is when there is a significant difference in the refractive power of each eye. Sometimes one eye is hyperopic (far sighted) and the other is myopic (near sighted) sending different image sizes to the brain. Again, the brain has difficulty making one image from these unequal sizes and will chose one eye to use and suppress the signals from the other resulting in lazy eye. The prescribing doctor will prescribe a moderately strong plus lens. Most children are slightly near sighted and adapt to the added plus of the prescription. The stronger power is used to draw the eye to the optical center of the lens. Our eyes are naturally drawn to the optical center which is the point in a lens where the light passes straight through without being deviated by the prismatic effect of the refractive power in the lens. You can imagine it as the lenses having a magnetic effect on the eyes. Both eyes will now be sending signals to the brain that will be used to create one image. The eye that had been suppressed is active and the muscles controlling eye movement are being strengthened and trained. So why the bifocal?

Children usually do not have difficulty accommodating for near viewing. However sometimes one or both eyes will turn inward when looking at near objects (esotropia) and the doctor will prescribe a bifocal to help keep the eyes aligned when reading or other engaged in other close range activities. Because the child does not perceive a focusing problem they are not naturally attracted to looking through the bifocal as an adult is. It is necessary to design the glasses so that the child has no choice but to look through the bifocal. A lined bifocal is used for younger children instead of a no-line progressive bifocal. The reading power in the progressive no-line is much lower in the lens than in the lined bifocal and the child would rarely look that far down. The lined bifocal is placed high, usually bisecting the pupil or placed just below it. This way anytime the child looks down their gaze will be through the bifocal. Many children will unconsciously try to avoid any part of the lens altogether so it is very important that the frame fit the child well and be adjusted properly. The glasses are likely slip some and this must be taken into consideration. With properly designed and fitted glasses the child’s visual system will be kept active at this crucial developmental time. This greatly enhances the child’s ability to learn and develop motor skills.

These types of visual problems are not always easy to detect. School screenings or looking at an eye chart in the pediatrician’s office are not enough to detect them. With an estimated 5% of all children having some type of strabismus it is important to have your child’s eyes examined by an eye doctor as early as possible, certainly before entering school.

Rec Specs Eye Protection for Sports

August 13th, 2014

rec specs 8.2014 003

No matter what your sport, protecting your eyes is critical to insuring that you will have a lifetime of sports, fitness, and fun ahead of you. Dress eyewear may work well for most of your life. But when the possibility of impact increases it is important to step up and make the right move and that is to get a pair of sport eyeglasses. At Alvernon Optical we feature Rec Specs eyeglasses. Rec Specs are designed to protect the eyes in a wide range of athletic activities. Polycarbonate or Trivex lenses are used for impact resistance. The frame is specially designed for the kind of impact that can occur in sports. And yes, basket ball is a contact sport. So come on in and talk with one of the friendly and knowledgeable opticians about keeping your game going with an eye on safety and performance.

The eyes you’re born with…

July 22nd, 2014

Think About Your Eyes and the Vision Council

Lenses for a Better Day at the Office

June 30th, 2014

Comfort is key. If you’re like 80 percent of all Americans who work or play on a computer, or if you work in an occupation that requires focusing for long periods on small tasks in a small environment, chances are, you probably suffer from headaches, blurred vision or general fatigue on occasion. A properly designed office lens matched to the wearer’s surroundings will allow the wearer to sit more comfortably, reduce eyestrain, and fatigue, and perhaps most importantly, increase productivity. Quite often, these symptoms can be easily corrected with a pair of specialty glasses designed specifically for the work or task you’re performing.

Contact Lens Breakthrough Technology

June 13th, 2014

Do your contacts feel dry and gritty at the end of your wearing time? How would you like to wear contact lenses that feel as good at the end of your wearing time, as they do when you first put them in? There is a new game changing high tech contact lens on the market called DALIES TOTAL 1®. The innovative design of DAILIES TOTAL 1® water gradient contact lenses features a unique water gradient:

  • Approaching 100% water at the outermost surface provides a silky-smooth surface for comfort that lasts until the end of the day
  • 6 times more breathable than the leading daily disposable contact lenses for white, healthy looking eye


The breakthrough design of DAILIES TOTAL 1® water gradient contact lenses allows exceptional comfort that lasts until the end of the day and exceptional breathability for white, healthy-looking eyes.

Experience the lens that feels like nothing.

Available now through Dr. Paul Cinalli at the 5th & Alvernon Location.

Technical information from Alcon TOTAL DAILIES 1®

Customizing a Versace Eyeglass Frame

June 10th, 2014

Denise has been with Alvernon Optical for over thirty eight  years. She is a bench optician which means she works in the lab. Her professionalism is shown in many ways. One is that she is certified by the American Board of Opticianry. Another is the level of skill she has developed and maintains. Denise is very good at her craft. Many optical companies will not work with drilled lenses which are necessary for the popular rimless eyeglasses. Denise is proficient in drilling and mounting different types of rimless eyeglasses from the antique gold filled to the modern titanium used by Silhouette, Addidas, and other frame manufacturers. Denise also likes to wear nice eyeglasses. She likes unusual frames and will often rework a vintage find. Recently she saw a new Versace. It has a really nice shape with a little lift and some tastefully placed stones. Cuts had been made in the frame around the stones in a pattern to accentuate the stones and add to the lift effect. Denise saw more. Using a fine point paint pen Denise added gold to the cut causing it to stand out in a nice contrast to the clear crystal stones. WOW! What was a really nice eyeglass was transformed into an extraordinary eyeglass. Thanks Denise for sharing your talents with all the people who have gotten their eyeglasses from Alvernon Optical over the years. And that is a lot of people.

lab may 2014 Denise & Versace   Versace Model 3150-B. Color 879 .

Ten Warning Signs of Vision Problems in Children

April 28th, 2014

The 10 warning signs of vision problems in children:
1. Squinting, closing/covering one eye
2. Holding a book close to the face
3. Losing his/her place while reading
4. Excessive clumsiness
5. Using a finger while reading
6. Tilting the head to one side
7. Performing below potential
8. Short attention span
9. Frequent daydreaming
10. Rubbing eyes repeatedly

This message is brought to you by the Better Vision Institute.

Jackie invites you to the Sunrise and Swan Remodel Sale

April 16th, 2014

Visit the Sunrise and Swan location for extraordinary deals during their Remodel Sale. Sunrise location only.

2014 04 02. Remodel.Jackie

Friends & Family Special Events

April 15th, 2014

From time to time Alvernon Optical has exclusive “Friends & Family” special sales events. These exclusive offers are not advertised to the public and are available only through our email sign up though our web site. Sign up now for these great offers!

Sunrise & Swan Remodel Sale

April 11th, 2014

Please join us Sunrise and Swan location for our remodel sale

Click here for more info