Are Cheap Reading Glasses Helpful Or Harmful To Your Eyes?

woman trying on reading glasses

Cheap reading glasses are available pretty much everywhere you shop. They come in so many different colors and styles that it’s tempting to buy one of each to match your clothes or your mood. 

But are they good for your eyes, or are they harming them over time? Keep reading to learn more about different types of reading glasses and which are best for you!

Why Do You Need Reading Glasses?

As you age, the natural lenses in your eyes become less flexible. This stiffening makes them unable to elongate to focus on objects up-close to you. 

You may find yourself holding books, menus, and other printed materials at arm’s length to focus on the words. This condition is presbyopia or age-related farsightedness, and it is a normal part of the aging process.

You may have presbyopia if you’ve experienced one of the following, especially if you are in your forties:

  • Words look blurry
  • It’s hard to see small print in dim lighting
  • Your eyes hurt whenever you focus on anything close up like sewing or reading
  • You get a headache when you read

Over-The-Counter Readers

Over-the-counter or cheap, reading glasses are fine to wear when you’re reading for short periods. If you don’t already need to wear regular eyeglasses, they may even be fine for longer.

But cheap readers only magnify the print to help you read it. They are not specific to your individual eye’s needs. They probably won’t harm your eyesight, but you may experience headaches and eye strain if you use them too much.

They are a cheaper option than prescription readers. If you’re not ready to pay for prescription readers or you don’t need prescription glasses yet, they may be fine.

Why You Should Have Your Eyes Checked

You should have regular eye exams. Your vision changes as you get older, and you may find that each of your eyes has its own needs.

Only a professional can determine your individual needs and prescribe the correct glasses or contacts for each of your eyes. An eye exam can also help to spot serious health problems in their early stages, like glaucoma.

Eye exams ensure your eyes remain healthy in the future and that you maintain clear vision now. In addition, being up to date with your eye doctor means you can get the best reading glasses for your vision needs.

Why Prescription Readers Are Worth The Investment

Prescription eyeglasses are for your individual needs. Your vision isn’t always the same in each eye, and only an eye doctor will be able to tell what each of your eyes needs.

In some cases, you may find that over-the-counter readers don’t meet your needs. Prescription reading glasses are a perfect fit for you and each of your eyes.

For example, if you have astigmatism. Astigmatism is an eye condition that causes your vision to appear blurry.

Cheap reading glasses do little for you if you have astigmatism. Instead, you’ll need prescription lenses.

It may make more sense to invest in a good pair of prescription lenses that you can wear all the time. There are plenty of lens options that can incorporate a reading strength.

That way, you don’t need to switch pairs of glasses out to do different tasks. Instead, you can go from reading a book to watching tv, to driving all with the same pair.

Interested in prescription reading glasses? Schedule an appointment at Vermont Eye Laser in Burlington, VT, to see if you can get reading glasses made for your eyes!

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