Wearing Out Your Lenses
A lot can happen to your frames and lenses when you wear glasses every day. Accidents occur even when you do your best to maintain your glasses. Your lenses can also sustain damage over time, leading to flaws, cracks, or scratches.
Although scratched lenses won’t make your vision worse, lens flaws can cause uncomfortable side effects. It can also be frustrating when there’s a mark in your field of view that you can’t rub away. So, do you need to visit your eye doctor for brand-new glasses? Or can an optician remove these scratches?
The Effects of Imperfect Lenses
Similar to smudges or debris stuck on your spectacles, a lens scratch can cause visual disturbances. Depending on the size and position of the damage, your vision may be distorted or obstructed. Looking through a warped or scratched lens can cause headaches.
A scratch may not drastically impact your visual experience if it’s minor. For example, if the scratch is near the lens’s edge or outer area, you may not notice it when looking straight ahead. Instead, you’ll likely see the mark when using your peripheral vision or during tasks that require a wider field of view, like driving.
The flaw or scratch can expand over time, even when you practice regular lens care. Initially, you may not be bothered by a tiny mark, but it can develop into a frustrating visual block. When a crack or scratch begins interfering with your vision, it’s time to visit your optician.
What About DIY Lens Repair?
Many DIY or home remedy methods are available for various topics, from at-home health hacks to simple repairs. While there are a few popular suggestions for DIY lens repair, opticians advise against many DIY tricks that often worsen lens damage.
Avoid using tissue paper, clothing, dish towels, or household linens to clean your lenses. The fabric might feel soft to your hand, but it can roughen the lens surface and leave behind lint or particles.
Never apply baking soda or toothpaste to seal a scratch. Baking soda can warp the lens or may cause it to become opaque, and toothpaste contains abrasive chemicals. Although toothpaste and baking soda may lessen the appearance of the scratch, both can damage the integrity of the lens or protective coatings.
Never use household cleaners to clean your lens. Household cleaners are abrasive and can strip away the protective coating on the lens, leaving it more vulnerable to damage.
Professional Lens Care
So if DIY fixes are a hazard, what about taking your lenses to a professional?
Unfortunately, a damaged lens must be replaced in many cases. Additionally, a scratch can affect the lens’s function and integrity. In time, the scratch will likely worsen, further impacting your vision quality.
However, your optician can help you replace your lens and offer solutions to prevent scratches. For example, protective coatings, such as scratch-resistant coating, can help your lenses last longer.
Remember: you don’t need to get new frames just because your lenses are damaged. As long as your frames are in good condition and work for you, you can have lenses fitted for your frames.
Preventing Lens Damage
Regularly cleaning your lenses can help you preserve them and prevent existing scratches from worsening. Grit, dust mites, lint, and particles can cling to your lenses, roughening the surface or sliding into imperfections when you rub your lenses. When you clean your lenses with a gritty cleaning product or linen, it’s like using sandpaper on them.
Instead, try these lens care tips to protect your lenses:
- Ask for a scratch-resistant coating the next time you purchase new lenses. Unfortunately, opticians cannot add coatings after the lenses have been ordered. Still, it can be a worthwhile investment if you need to replace a scratched lens or update your prescription.
- Avoid leaving your spectacles in direct sunlight or hot spots (like a vehicle or windowsill). Heat can damage protective coatings, making your lenses more vulnerable.
- Store your glasses in a hard protective case when not in use. A case can keep any particles from clinging to your lenses and keep any falls or bumps from causing damage.
- Use an approved lens cleaner or mild dish soap to wet your lenses when cleaning. Wipe your lenses with a microfiber cloth. By keeping dirt and particles from getting trapped inside scratches or flaws, you can avoid causing further damage.
Talk to Your Optician
Your optician can replace your damaged lenses with lenses custom-fitted for your favourite frames.
At West Coast Optical, our in-house computerized edging system can accurately duplicate a frame’s shape using a 3D tracer. As a result, your flawless lenses will fit snugly in your frame, providing optimal, comfortable vision.
We also understand that kids’ eyewear tends to receive more wear and tear. For this, we offer a Junior Package by Essilor lenses that include a one-time scratch warranty for 2 years, a 15-month prescription warranty, and a 2-year warranty for children’s frames. This way, parents can stress less about their kid’s scratched lenses and more about the quality of their vision. Ask one of our friendly staff members for more details.
Book an appointment with us today to discuss lens care and repair with an optician.