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Ophthalmology & Optometry/Choosing a Weaker Prescription


I'm 41 and have only just begun to require glasses over the last couple years while reading. My question is, if one wishes to prevent quickly developing a dependency on using them, can one deliberately opt for a weaker prescriptions? As a late-commer to this subject, I really know nothing at all about it, but I do have a very strong hunch that it just may be possible that many people start to depend on their glasses/contacts through using them. I wish to have the bare minimum assistance from my prescription. Is this, at least according to some in this field, an appropriate method of dealing with slowly deteriorating vision? For example, when using simple reading glasses (non-prescription) a magnification of 1.25 is more than adequate for me. Less magnification would be sufficient, actually ideal, such as 1.15. Yes, I'm aware that prescription glasses address other issues, stigmatism, etc, but the principle of offering less assistance through a prescription to deter the decline should still apply.
Thanks for your assistance.

Hi David, I've included a link to show you the graph of the aging eye's loss of accommodation.  You are on the line, you can't change the slope, and you can't get off the line until you're dead. So I guess you can tell that my opinion is to use the glasses that make the near work 'most comfortable' and be aware that only powers of .25 increments are available. That being said, do what ever you want or think would matter because it won't change the inevitable.

Welcome to adulthood,
Mitch Axelrod,OD

Ophthalmology & Optometry

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Mitchell Axelrod


I'm happy to answer questions about eye exam findings and procedures, glasses and contact lens types/prescriptions/problems. I can also answer questions about general eye conditions/diseases. I do not answer questions concerning surgical techniques/procedures. Please state your age or within a small range when asking questions, as it is often important.


Optometrist 19 yrs.

Doctor of Optometry, cum laude; Residency in Ocular Disease

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