Getting used to progressive lenses?

So I’m getting my first pair of progressive lenses sometime in the next ten business days from my eye doctor’s office. I’ve read the past threads suggested by Discourse, and the most recent one seems to be five years old. I’ve discovered that YM very definitely V, with answers all over the place.

I was nervous about the large spots without prescription, but it seems that most of the time, it makes less of a difference than I’d think, especially in driving, the key activity I was concerned about. I’ll have a “training” appointment when I pick them up, but I don’t suppose there’s any way to tell how well they’ll work before I try them, is there?

Similarly, is there any real way to tell how I’ll know what my best option is? The three main ones (progressive, lined, multiple glasses) all have advantages and disadvantages, and I’m kind of overwhelmed thinking about it. I guess I’m just thinking about how much I’ll have to adjust to any of these situations, and there’s no real way to tell until I try.

Any new thoughts from current times, especially those who might’ve changed their minds between the last thread in 2015 and now?

I will preface this by saying, I have a lazy eye. When I went to progressives it did take me a while to “find the sweet spot.” At the time, I had a job that was high stress, fast paced, at times. I found that I just could not use them at that job, so I got a pair of standard bifocals for that. I’ve been wearing progressives for about 10 years now, and I don’t think that would be a problem for me. I think people with more normal eyes would have better adaption time. Either way, it’s going to take you time to get used to the bi focus. Watch when you are stepping up or down until you get used to them.

I’ve got progressives. I was really nervous about them, but the first time I put them on, I could just suddenly see. No big deal.

However, there was a period when I was getting headaches from keeping my head cocked back all day. I was using my computer at work and looking through the bottom of the lenses. I just needed to adjust the position of the monitor.

I’ve been wearing progressive lenses for a couple of years now and didn’t really have any trouble adjusting. I was warned, though, that some people do have all kinds of issues.

I just got my first pair about a month ago, and I had zero trouble adjusting. I was nervous about it, especially driving, but I didn’t notice a difference at all (other than an updated prescription, which meant I could see again :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:).

I got progressives in 2015 when my near vision first started to go. Hated them so much, returned them before I could get acclimated to them.

In 2018 my near vision was getting worse. I got a dedicated pair of reading glasses to keep where I needed them. Worked out fine.

In 2020 I needed the readers often enough that juggling multiple pairs was no longer convenient, so I gave it another go with progressives. They were still annoying, but helpful enough that I stuck with it long enough to get acclimated, and now they’re great.

I started wearing them around 2003, and have gotten new prescriptions about every 2 yrs since then. First go round was easy, I just needed to be careful going downstairs and off curbs a few times. It was great being able to see without juggling distance and reading glasses.
I never had a problem till my last pair, which was 6 months ago…something was wrong with either the placement or prescription which has since been corrected.
My biggest adjustment was no longer being able to comfortably lay down and watch TV.
I think you will be fine…

I have thoughts, but I don’t think they’ll be particularly useful to you. I went to progressive lenses a great many years ago, and hated them so much I kept getting the optician to redo them, finally reducing the lower “reading glasses” section to a vanishingly small sliver, so they’re really just normal distance glasses for all practical purposes. Which is fine with me, because my near vision for reading or using the computer is fine without glasses, so I just take them off.

However my eyes have been changing again as I age and now one is quite a bit weaker than the other at reading distances. My solution to this is going to be to get a dedicated second pair of glasses for reading and especially for computer use. Even if I liked progressive lenses or bifocals, the traditional assumption is that you’re looking down through the lower part of the glasses when reading, but that assumption is useless when using a computer, especially a desktop monitor where you’re actually looking straight ahead, not down.

But a great many people get by just fine with progressives or bifocals, so it’s very much a case of YMMV. A decent optician should be willing to redo the lenses if they’re not satisfactory – for instance, replacing progressives with regular lenses.

I had no trouble at all. Adjusted instantly. Still, when I read in bed every night, I prefer reading glasses.

I have had progressives for years. It does take a few days to be fully used to them, but even at its worst, it didn’t cause any problems.

I’ve also worn progressives for years. Your eyes are amazingly adaptive if you are patient enough. I would caution you to hold the handrail when descending stairs until you are used to them.

(I probably said this in one of the earlier threads, too lazy to check)


This was the biggie for me - going down stairs. But within 2 days, I figured it out, and I’ve been wearing progressives now for more than 20 years and I’m quite happy.

I got mine in 2015. I never needed to wear glasses before that. I first got reading glasses for near vision, but switching back and forth was too annoying. So my progressives had almost no prescription on top.

I had no problems adjusting. My reading Rx strength has gone up considerably, but still no issues. I can look straight down on stairs without an issue. My brain has clearly adjusted to them.

I did have neck pain from tilting my head back when using my computer, so I got a pair of office glasses that I wear when working. The middle of them has the appropriate Rx for my monitor distance, so I can look straight at the monitor. The bottom is for closer, and just a small area at the top is for distance.

For me, it has become second nature to just tilt my head up or down until what I’m looking at is in focus. It takes no conscious thought, it just happens.

I also have reading only glasses for when I’m lying in bed on my stomach.

I got some a few years ago, after the presbyopia caught up with me, and I was tired of having to carry around reading glasses. So I got some readers I can store on my face! My progressives are a pretty mild reading glass prescription, and are uncorrected for distance vision.

When I first got them it was terrible. The first time I tried to use them I was very upset, because for close things, part would be perfect, but the surrounding page/screen would be blurry. I went back, because I hated them, and they said to wear them a few days and see how it goes.

A few days later I was completely used to them, and they’re great now. I can see distance well (but not as good as when I was 20), and I can read normal size print by just looking through the bottom part of the glasses.

The biggest problem is my brain has learned to focus on close things by tilting my head up. That only works when I’m wearing the glasses, so I have to force myself to look at things straight when the glasses are off.

For my large monitor at work I got progressives where the close focus area goes much higher up. That is perfect for the monitor. For quite awhile I used those more like reading glasses—taking them off if I wasn’t actually reading. Now I just let distant things be a bit blurry, and it doesn’t bother me to walk around or talk to people while wearing them.

The regular progressives are find for a smaller laptop screen, phone, or tablet.

I’ve worn glasses pretty much all my life and usually my eyes adjusted in less than a day, mere hours, to a new prescription.

Took me about a week for my first progressives. Don’t get me wrong, right out of the starting gate they were just fine for 75-85% of circumstances but a few things threw me off for a bit. You have to learn a bit about how to find the “sweet spot” for a given distance.

The thing that gave me the most trouble (and you’ll hear this over and over) was descending stairs/steps. You have to re-learn how to judge distance when stepping down. As others have said, hold the handrail for at least the first week or two. You will adjust. It just takes a bit for your brain to learn the trick.

Training??? Oh, man, I am SOOOO jealous.

When I got my progressives about 15-20 years ago, I totally hated them, and the worst part was that no one (eye doctor, optician, friends who had progressives) understood what I was talking about.

How long did it take me to get used to them? Let’s say that even now, I wish I had my old glasses back. But I have resigned myself to the understanding that it’s not the glasses’ fault - my eyes have changed and they need the progressives, and regulars won’t work as well as my memory would suggest.

you should adjust within a day or three. If not, the prescription is probably off.

I’ve had a few. Then a year ago I got a new prescription. These just didn’t work. Wouldn’t become focused no matter how I adjusted my angle of vision. Went in, and they were off by just a little bit. Got the new script, and instantly felt good.

Note: it may take a couple of days of naturally getting to the right field of vision. This should be automatic, but at first you might need to be looking up and down to find the focus spot. Key learning I had was if you can’t find a temporary spot where things are in focus, then it’s probably not the correct script.

Been wearing glasses since I was 12 and never went to bifocals, straight to progressive a couple of decades ago. Too a couple of days to get to the first pair, but now whenever I get a new pair, it takes me minutes. The only time I become aware of them is when I have to consciously tilt my head bad or lower what I’m reading to see text clearly.

One time I tried to save money and got no line bifocals and quickly upgrade to progressives. It was fine as long as I was sitting at my desk, but as soon as I got up, I instantly couldn’t see more than a foot in front of me. Nearly fell down the stairs a few times. I used my old progressives until my new pair was complete.

I know one of my eyes is 250+ and the other is 175+. Without my glasses everything is a blur, no matter how close.

I’ve been wearing glasses since I was 7, so glasses are a part of me. I’m near sighted and could read with or without glasses until my mid-forties when I switched to progressives.

I never had a problem adjusting, in spite of the warnings from my optician. Where I do have an issue is computer work, so I have single vision glasses that I wear for that. I still end up taking my glasses off for close work.

I do have a pair of bifocals at the office with distance top and intermediate bottom if I am working in a conference room where I have to see my computer and the board/TV at the same time.

I got what my optician called “student glasses” 6-7 years ago when I had minor issues with quickly focusing on text. They were progressives with a very minor change in prescription. Those worked great and I needed no time adapting.

Two years ago I got “real” progressives for the first time and had the same issues people have mentioned. I initially thought “this can’t be how bad it’s supposed to be”. I was worried about walking down stairs. I almost went back. And then after about a week it was all second nature to me and they felt as normal as any glasses I’ve ever had.