Sponsored by IOT
By Deborah Kotob, ABOM
Imagine your typical workday. Are you spending hours staring at a screen? Based on the national average, we spend roughly six hours per day at a desk, in front of a computer. This extensive digital screen time is a pain in the neck for the progressive lens wearer, who must adopt an unnatural and uncomfortable chin-up posture. PAL wearers must maintain this awkward posture to ensure that their line of sight aligns with a small restricted intermediate zone required to see at the focal distance for most computer screens. Some of us adapt to digital screen life by sitting closer with our chins raised as we try to use the lens’ somewhat larger PAL reading area. Many use single focal length readers with weaker power to improve sustained intermediate vision for long stretches staring at our computer screen. Fact: PALs and readers are less than ideal for a full day at the computer for the presbyope.
I submit that we are underserving this population of screen focused corrective lens wearers. The elephant in the room is our fear of being pushy salespeople if we talk to patients about multiple pairs. However, we should not deny the patient a comfortable vision experience and even physical comfort while working. Occupational glasses are always a separate pair. We give plumbers lenses with a near segment on the top of the lens to provide comfortable near vision when looking up at close range while working. Computer use is a big part of many occupations. One pair can’t do it all ever! Having one pair of general-purpose progressive glasses does not meet the visual demands of modern work habits.
The goal is a lens in which the wearer can clearly see straight ahead while seated at their desk in front of their computer screen. This lens must allow them to assume a natural ergonomic posture and simultaneously allow for comfortable reading and rapid focal distance changes. Modern work habits see us switching between computer screens to handheld devices that are held closer than standard reading material. We need the lens to facilitate good dynamic vision with rapid gaze changes and for different distances. All of this equates to reduced visual fatigue and improved focus.
By now, we all understand that IOT specializes in developing free-form designs that minimize lens aberrations and increase useable area through lens optimization and personalized compensation. So it is no surprise that they designed a premier office design in collaboration with Younger. The Camber Office uses variable base curve front design, the hallmark of the Camber technology (Fig. 1). Why is the variable base curve necessary? According to studies performed by Ostwalt in 1898, for every lens power, there is a correct and best-form base curve to minimize lens aberrations. Ideally, with a multifocal lens, each power zone is matched and starts with a base curve that adheres to the best-form principals. Different powers in different zones require different base curves throughout the lens. Camber optimizes the power for intermediate and near distances with different base curves on the same lens.
FIG. 2 Take note of the expanded intermediate and near areas and width in the Camber Office on the right. Unlike a progressive where the power increases, the power in the Camber Office degression multifocal design decreases as you move up the lens.
Camber Office is a premium occupational lens with a unique architecture where the front surface, the Camber lens blank, provides the ideal base curve. The back surface utilizes a personalized office digital degressive design for intermediate and near distances (Fig. 2). Camber Office incorporates Smart Add, the technology that improves the patient’s visual experience when using digital devices. This technology facilitates changes in focus at different working distances in a more agile and precise way when the patient is working or reading simultaneously with multiple screens seen at different distances. Expanded area for these two key focal lengths vastly improves the visual and physical comfort for long days at the computer.
In a recent clinical trial, 100 percent of wearers reported near vision easier to find with Camber lenses (Fig. 3). Wearers perceived improved peripheral vision and wider visual fields. Make it your mission to bring this same comfort and acuity to every patient who suffers from digital eyestrain and discomfort after hours at the computer.