If you’re native to Colorado, it is no secret that polarized lenses are a necessity all year. From the snowy mountains, to the busy city, the sun is amazing here! So, before you grab your next pair of shades, here are some things you need to know.
Polarized lenses do many different things. It can be confusing so we want to break it down.
In order to understand what polarized lenses can and cannot do, it is important to understand how they work. Basically, polarized lenses filter light through a vertical lens. This means only light some light can fit through the lens. As a result, light is blocked that is bouncing off of objects such as water, ice, metal objects and more. Normal light moves on many planes, so when it is bouncing off a surface of some kind it is polarized. Polarized lenses are most effective at a 90-degree angle with respect to the axis of the filter. Consequently, these lenses do not block all sun rays at all times, they still let some light in.
Polarized lenses have to be cut in a way that the filter works correctly. As a result, there is more technology and room for error in these lenses. Therefore, they are more expensive. As the technology has become more available prices have come down, but that doesn’t mean that they are the best fit for you. Additionally, it is so important to purchase from a reputable optical for these lenses. Many expensive polarized lenses do not meet industry standards for UV protection.
As we talked about earlier, polarized lenses block light bouncing off objects. This can be super helpful in Colorado the day after a big snow when the sun is shining down on the snow. Or when you’re driving at rush hour and there is a lot of sun bouncing off other cars.
As with any optical fit, there are pros and cons. There are different needs for each patient. At our clinics we take the time to understand our patients so we can get them the best fit for their needs. Different types of skiers have different needs. Sometime polarized lenses can diminish details, this can be dangerous. Blinding snow can also be dangerous. Thus, based on the type of skier will be a different recommendation.
There are two common thicknesses with polarized lenses, a .75mm and a 1.1 mm. The thickness provides more impact resistance, but the filters are the same. Hence, you want to choose the resistance you need, it will not affect the filter.
When you are looking at a display, you may see lines or even black outs when wearing polarized lenses. Polarized cancels out polarized. Different displays can be more or less effected based on the liquid crystal display. If you are looking at an ATM or other LCD, you will want to remove lenses to see the screen accurately.
Most patients that suffer from a light sensitivity should have transitional lenses. This allows your lenses to adapt based on the light around you. There are different types of technology for these lenses and how they change, but the idea is to create more comfort for the patient by decreasing all surroundings without the patient having to change glasses. We can show patients different options for polarized transitional lenses. These are a great option for patients that suffer from light sensitivity.
Currently the technology isn’t able to adapt to lined bifocal or trifocal lenses. With that said, progressive lenses (no line bifocals) do have polarized options.
Everyone has different needs, to find the lenses that will work best for your needs contact us today!