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What Are the Problems With Multifocal Contact Lenses?

What Are the Problems With Multifocal Contact Lenses?

There are many types of contact lenses, one of which is multifocal contacts. How do these contacts work exactly? Essentially, the lenses adapt to your vision based on where in the lenses you’re looking. 

Pretty cool. Right?

 Of course, while these contacts work for many people, there are some multifocal contact lens problems you should be aware of so that you know what to expect. 

In this blog, we’re going to cover some of the most common types of problems with these lenses. We hope it helps you!

What are the common problems with multifocal contact lenses?

A common problem with multifocal contact lenses is that they can take time to adjust to if you haven’t used them before. Multifocal contacts have distinct viewing areas you can access by peering through different portions of the lens. Looking through the bottom part of the lens will offer the clearest near vision, whereas the upper part of the lens will provide great intermediate vision. 

Another problem with multifocal contact lenses is that you might see glare for a while during the darker hours of the day. This side effect will go away once your eyes adapt to the new lenses. 

Multifocal contacts also cost a little more than other types of lenses. Why? They’re higher power, and it takes longer to get the perfect fit since the eye doctor must ensure they’re comfortable and contain the prescription your eyes need.

How can you get the best experience with multifocal contacts?

Multifocal contacts aren’t as tricky as they seem. Despite a potentially lengthy adjustment period, they can work well for your eyes, and you’ll soon realize that the wait was worth it.

After all, you’ll no longer struggle to see up close or at an intermediate distance. All you’ll need to do is peer through the right part of the lens. It’ll feel like your vision has never been better.

To have the most success with multifocal contacts, we recommend:

  • Considering multifocal contact lenses if you have presbyopia. Once you turn 40, you’re at a higher risk for presbyopia (a refractive error that causes nearby objects to appear blurry). Multifocal contacts are one of the best solutions for this condition since they cover multiple prescriptions, from astigmatism to nearsightedness.
  • Selecting the best types of contacts for your lifestyle. If your busy schedule makes it hard to stay on top of your contact lens’ cleanings, consider daily contacts, which you can discard at the end of each day.   
  • Listening as your eye doctor shows you how to insert and remove your contacts. At your contact lens exam, the optometrist will fit your eyes for contacts and explain how to insert and remove them. Watch as they do so to ensure you’re using them the right way at home. 
  • Asking questions. Don’t be afraid to inquire about questions or concerns you have about multifocal contact lenses and their problems. We’re happy to help however we can. 

How long can it take for your eyes to adjust to multifocal contact lenses?

If you haven’t had enough time to adapt to the different viewing areas in multifocal contacts, it may be challenging to see. Plan for four to six weeks to get used to them. (Sometimes, even a week to 10 days or so is sufficient.)

Over time, your eyes will naturally look through the correct part of the lens, and you’ll enjoy better vision because of it. 

Why is your distance vision blurry with multifocal contacts?

Multifocal contacts work wonders for people with various vision issues, such as trouble seeing up close and far away. However, it’s not uncommon for things to appear fuzzy in the distance from time to time. 

This type of contact lens contains multiple prescriptions, and they use some of your distance vision to help with your nearby vision. That can make your vision blurry at a distance. However, rest assured that even if things look a little blurry, your visual clarity will still be much greater than if you decided to go without prescription lenses.

Why can’t you read with multifocal contact lenses?

Just as your distance vision might not be as clear as your near vision on some occasions, it can also be vice versa. To help yourself adapt to your new contacts, it’s important to wear them consistently and as prescribed by your eye doctor. 

How to Adapt to Multifocal Contact Lenses

There are many ways to get used to multifocals. Here are a few examples:

  • Wear them all day in the beginning. This can help your eyes adjust to the different fields of view easier than if you took your contacts on and off multiple times during the day. Enough wear-time can help your eyes get used to looking through the right part of the lenses. (Just remember to remove your contacts at night!)
  • Create a routine. You know you need to wear your contacts all day, but how do you keep yourself from forgetting to put them on? The key is to start a routine early on. You could put your contacts in their case next to your bed so that they’re the first thing you see when you wake up and go to sleep. You could also put them on right before drinking your morning coffee. Soon enough, it’ll be easier to remember your contacts, and it’ll help you get the most out of them. 
  • Report any discomfort to your eye doctor. If the contacts feel weird or out of place on your eye, it’s important to get in touch with your optometrist right away. They can make sure you’re wearing them correctly and help you make adjustments if necessary.
  • Keep your eyes up. Even if it’s tempting to look down when you’re walking your dog or walking up the stairs, try not to do this in multifocals. The reason is that going from distance to near vision when walking can cause issues and potentially get you hurt if you’re not careful.

What Are the Problems With Multifocal Contact Lenses?

Summary: What are the disadvantages of multifocal contact lenses?

Few types of eyewear are more successful for those with various refractive errors than multifocal contact lenses. Problems may include a long adjustment period (about a month), glare at nighttime, and a higher price than alternative lenses. 

While everyone has a different experience with multifocal contact lenses, this corrective eyewear is, in general, a fantastic choice. Once you’ve surpassed the initial adjustment period, you may find that you love them even more than people who write reviews for the best multifocal contact lenses.

This blog was originally published on February 4, 2020, and expanded in August 2022.  

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Browse our selection of top contact lens brands. We carry daily, weekly, and monthly disposables, multifocal contacts, and more. Visit your local For Eyes now, or shop online in just a few clicks. 



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