Winter is here, and even with shorter days, many consumers understand that sunglasses aren’t just for summer. But why do non-prescription sunglass wearers like to challenge eyecare professionals by asking if there really is a difference between expensive and inexpensive sunglasses? The question is almost always accompanied by that “gotcha” look. It seems as though they think that because they don’t need vision correction, they can spend as little as possible, and gain a bargain unavailable to prescription lens wearers. I’ve found, however, that precisely because they don’t wear glasses, emmetropes know very little about sun lenses.
I have been a high school teacher for 17 years. I started out as a science teacher and slowly transitioned to teaching a subject and skill I learned as a US Navy Hospital Corpsman over 20 years ago. I started a program teaching my students at East High School in Rochester, NY, an optician’s skills. Rochester has one of the highest rates of poverty in the nation. I knew that a program teaching students skills that made them employable. It would be a great way to help my students aim for a consistently growing profession. In the time I have been teaching I have also seen many children who had issues in class, both academically and behaviorally and I knew that a lack of glasses could cause some of these issues. In developing my program I knew that it wasn’t enough to simply teach students the skills, but that they had to use them and we could use their skills to make glasses for children in the Rochester City School District.
In Part 1 we learned that the individual designs of digital lenses take into account not just the prescription, but Position of Wear measurements, resulting in compensated power. In Part 2 we discussed which measurements are necessary, when to use default measurements, and lensometer power versus power to the wearer. Concluding the series, learn why your lab is your best resource for solving non-adapt issues.
It was Lord Kelvin, the great British physicist and thermometer enthusiast who said, “To measure is to know. If you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it.” Perhaps this is obvious, but it sounds more impressive when it’s said by a great scientist. (In the interest of full disclosure, he also said “Heavier than air flying machines are impossible,” which is obviously wrong. But having been forced to fly coast-to-coast in an economy-class middle seat, I don’t think he was that far off.)
Parts 1 and 2 addressed the importance of conversation with patients to gather information that’s important in designing their eyewear. Part 3 guides you through the questions to ask during those conversations.
To make great eyewear, we need to identify the patients’ expectations. What do they need to see well, and what do they want to be able to do? If you don’t discuss wants and needs with them and you don’t tell them why you chose the products you did, and one of their friends tells them about a new product that they might have had interest in, the patient then assumes that either you didn’t know about it and you’re out of touch, or possibly that you didn’t care enough to discuss it with them. Then what happens? It prompts them to search for information on the internet and find volumes of half-truths online, which of course, they believe because you’ve lost credibility. None of these situations paints a very good picture of you as a professional who is on top of your game, does it?