FMR's Update Journal #1 - reversing years of blur adaptation

First post in this new thread!

11/29/18: Last night, I switched to -2.50, -2.25. Not the first time I’ve worn this power, but I didn’t stick to it in the past. I had been using -2.25, -2.00 for most of the past few months, but also was going without glasses sometimes for a few days at a time. I had tried going up 0.25 a few other times this past year, but wasn’t successful…I quit from fear of wearing stronger glasses or fatiguing my eyes. Thankfully, others here who have been through this reassured me that there’s nothing to worry about. This is going to be the first of many power increases, until I get to full correction/true normalized that lets me see around or close to 20/20. Plan is to stay with this power for about 6 weeks, and then increase by 0.25 again and stay with the next power for around 5 weeks.

Still using no glasses instead of a differential, which gives a good amount of myopic blur at about 20/40 for the computer distance of about 45cm; I’m going to look back at Jake’s videos on the timing and pattern of changing differentials and normalized. I now know you only want to change one a time, so that’s why I’m not going to use differentials at this time. The distance vision is more important to rectify right now…I can deal with a slightly blurry near for now.

Vision is pretty good with these. Fairly comfortable, even for the first day. I can tell these are focusing light much closer to the central retina than the previous pair was There is not too much blur, but distance is still vaguely indistinct compared to what you’d get with a full correction, and small details are not readable. Wearing them after a day of too much screen use did not reduce my acuity as I feared it might.

Snellen in poor, dim light with these is a readable but not perfect 20/60 as of today (measured at 10 feet with a Snellen chart intended to be used at that distance).

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It’s been about a week with the -2.5, -2.25. So far, so good. The vision is better than with the weaker lenses, but still not good enough. It’s an extremely blurry, not even readable 20/40 (I measured using a snellen chart under standard testing conditions in an optometry office). In other words, it’s worse than 20/40…more like 20/60 or 20/70, though I could occasionally make out a few 20/40 letters. Near vision is excellent with them as well, though for anything closer than 2 feet or any sustained near work of more than a few seconds, I remove them just to avoid hyperopic blur. There is a bit of a lag after nearwork, and definitely ciliary spasm after spending time in dim light. There’s still blur with these glasses, though there are times I can clear distance almost totally with them in good light. Still, it’s a bit more of a strain than you really want to have.

I’ve decided to give it about 4 weeks between each increase in correction. Otherwise, I’ll never get to where I want to. I will probably phase in some weak differentials in another week, starting at -0.5, -0.25, and will increase those after 6-12 weeks to a stronger pair. I need them, and feel almost ready to handle another focal plane change (I’ve used this pair of normalized a bit in the past few months, as well as briefly last year, so they’re not totally new to me.)

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Very interesting observation today…

While riding in a car after on the highway dark, and wearing the -2.5, -2.25 glasses (which put me at around the equivalent of someone with -1.5D myopia), I noticed that even though that level is considered low myopia, the vision is still really bad at night…I’d say about as bad someone with -4 sees in daylight in terms of the level of blur. I could not even read anything on the navigation display or dashboard in the car from the back seat, and could not actually see the other cars when they were very far away…just their lights (which were very blurred).

Yup, so looks like I’m going to continue needing glasses for quite a long time yet.

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It’s awesome that you keep such a detailed log and share it with the rest of us. Feel free to follow Jim’s great example if you haven’t done so!

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Got the new glasses today. I have a new pair of -2.5, -2.25, as the old ones are a bit scratched up and don’t have the best coating. The new glasses are a different frame shape and sit slightly further away, which is going to take some getting used to…even though the power isn’t technically different. It still has an effect on you similar to a different power, just not as pronounced.

Also got a pair of plano lens glasses to use as differentials for the time being, which seem to actually have a slight bit minus power…maybe -0.05, best guess. It’s not even totally symmetrical in both lenses or all axes. I’ve heard that the tolerance for plastic lenses made in 0.25 increments is 0.12, which is crazy. So, it stands to reason they have trouble making them exactly 0.00. Thankfully, these are way under 0.12, though.

Both pairs have a slight blue blocking tint, which isn’t noticeable in terms of color.

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I couldn’t take it anymore…I had to start using the new differentials. Computer vision is too demanding and stressful not to. First of all, the optics on the plano glasses are not that great (those of you who plan to wear plano lenses, keep that in mind…it pays to get good quality ones, I guess, rather than ones from online companies). The distortion was too much and the “power” just felt off. I could not have held out another week or two using them.

These differentials are not the ideal power at -0.5, -0.25, but that’s in keeping with my strategy of starting out low and working my way up over time to combat blur adaptation. I will probably increase by 1D on the next pair in a month or so. (Unlike with the normalized, I am not going to gradually increase the differentials…I will do so in one or possibly two steps and that’s it…each separated by at least one month.) Focus is good at 40cm (which is close, I know (just a bit of myopic blur…about 1D)). When I start using the stronger lenses in about a month, I’ll be able to sit back a bit further.

And I’m really enjoying the new pair of semi normalized glasses!
Edit (12/13/18): I’m just barely reading a very blurry 20/40 (no straining) with both eyes open with these glasses in poor indoor light. Also, with the new glasses, I noticed a counter that was crooked that I never noticed before! I measured it and sure enough, it was. So the visual cortex is starting to work better. Also, I used the new differentials for cutting my fingernails, and my vision was better than without them, at about the 27cm distance. I attribute this to the fact that they’re correcting for the slight difference between my two eyes (~0.25D). It’s amazing such a small amount of correction can make such a difference in binocular vision. I was also using approx. 0.7D of accommodation at that distance, and everything was sharp.

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I got off track for a few days and stopped using glasses due to too much ciliary spasm, but recovered mostly, did not lose ground. I temporarily stopped using the differentials for now as well. I also switched back to my older -2.5, -2.25 pair. Less distortion due to smaller lenses, and seem to be about 0.1D stronger than the new pair because they sit closer. Vision is much sharper with them as a result. Active focus/clear flashes is going great. I think I might need more than just another week with these before I increase by 0.25. I have a feeling I’m not going to have to go up to -4, -3.75 eventually after all for full time wear, if the vision with these is any indication. I’m experiencing a lot of the low myopia visual effects that have been discussed while I’m wearing these. So I am likely inside of -1.5D residual myopia with them on…which means I’m probably just a hair under -4 for true correction in my right eye. Call it -3.9 best guess. I’ll resume far point measurements soon.

Too bad we can’t get glasses in .1D increments…my experiment leads me to think it would be worthwhile.

I had to go a few days without glasses because of very strained eyes from overuse of screens on Monday. It’s still not back to normal, but I started phasing the glasses back in a day ago. A very sunny day (for Winter) helped, too. I expect to use the current glasses for at least another 2 weeks before going up a quarter.

I gave some tips to someone I know today who is having a vision exam this month, to help him recognize and avoid over correction during it. I showed him and described what hyperopic defocus looks like so he can recognize it.

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It’s almost a month now since I started using the very weak differentials. I have not used them consistently. They’re too weak; I think I’m ready to start using stronger ones this weekend. I’ll be going up a whole diopter, and plan to use them part-time as well. So, differentials will be -1.5, -1.25. Current semi-normalized is -2.5, -2.25. So 1D difference between them. Official full prescription is currently -4, -3.75, but I don’t currently use them at all. I also have an old pair from the eye doctor that’s too strong at -4.5, -3.75…I never bought the -4.25, -3.75 from them that they prescribed at the visit after that, instead buying the significantly cheaper ones online.

15 or so years ago, I was -5, -5. I can’t wait to be under -4 in both eyes with no room for argument at the eye doctor by their worst case prescriptions. That means hitting -3.25 in both eyes for normalized and seeing 20/20 with it in poor light.

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Finally made it to this topic, thanks for sharing!

It does read a bit to me like you’re practising some kind of self-torture, though… :upside_down_face:

If those differentials are too weak and a pain every day - why are you waiting so long? I don’t even want to imagine your posture!

I’m also not sure if going up so slowly is really necessary, or just another way to ruin your day :wink:
You do know what Jake recommends for first normalised, so…
I don’t get why you’re doing it this way? Is there something in the blog/videos suggesting this that I’ve missed? I was fully or over corrected, so blur adaption didn’t matter to me.

I know it’s hard, been reducing too fast myself, but really, going back up to what I need is such a relief!

Just my 2 cents… :wink:

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Thanks for the suggestion of increasing faster. Unfortunately last year, when I tried that, it never felt right. I even gave it a couple of months. I jumped up by a diopter, and it was like there was always something wrong.

It’s not optimal to have to wait so long, but I see no other choice after that experience.

Seems like adapting to lenses and giving it time is not just a one way thing when it comes to reducing, but might apply to increasing, too. And maybe part of the biology is already adapted to the lower power…maybe the choroid, as per some other things discussed on this site.

I’m talking specifically about the normalized.

As for the differentials, I have no idea what the best action is. So I’m going to jump up a diopter and see what happens.

I waited to increase them because I did not want to change them at the same time as the normalized was last increased. I thought it would be too much to adapt to.

Ever had the experience that certain powers just never seem right? And then a 0.25 change up or down seems to help? I know Matt wrote about that as well. It makes no sense to me…but I never got used to the -1.75, -1.5 differentials last year. That’s why I’m trying -1.5, -1.25 this time. I’ll go as high as -2 if I need to, if those don’t feel right after a few weeks.

I’m tempted to jump right to the -2, -1.75 for differentials, since I’ve worn it so long (years) with good comfort full time in the past, but I don’t want to overcorrect at near, either. That’s also the power that an optometrist would have prescribed for close work if I asked for computer grasses, so it makes sense. We’ll see.

Who knows…maybe after the differentials are sorted out, I’ll feel a lot better. I’m going to keep being conservative with the rate of changes, though. It’s like fitness. Slower is better, I think.

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It took forever to find them, but I just started using the -1.5, -1.25 differentials. Still a bit of myopic blur or double vision in lower light at near with them, but a huge improvement over working with nothing or a power a diopter lower.

Edit: I’ve worn these for about 6 hours now to really test them out. Lots of screen time, etc. Under adverse conditions. They pass the test. Going to switch back to my semi-normalized for the rest of the day.

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This morning, I wore the differentials for a few minutes looking out the window and got good distance active focus. This was after staring at my phone in bed for 20 minutes after waking up.

These differentials (-1.5R, -1.25L) are slightly clearer than my original pair was when I got it in 2006 or so. Those were -2, -1.25. That makes sense, because I was -4.50, -3.75 for distance back then. Today I’m around -3.87, -3.62 or so with some active focus.

So, in the past 10 years, I’ve improved by almost 0.75D with sporadic use of a few Bates ideas, a bit of endmyopia last year, and wearing glasses that were far too weak and uncomfortable. Contrast this with average endmyopia rates of improvement, and you see it was excruciatingly slow the other way. @jakey

I then switched to the semi normalized and went outside for a while before eating. It was sunny, and I got good active focus. Did it for a while. I like sunny days in the Winter if it’s not too cold, for vision. I find it one of the best conditions all year to practice.

The current glasses are definitely a touch too weak still, as expected. I plan to increase the normalized by 0.25 in another week or so, after I get used to these differentials fully. That way I’m not changing too many things at once, a mistake I made in the past.

While outside, I practiced looking at text among other things. I also noticed I do get a bit of directional blur at times, even though I technically don’t have enough astigmatism that eye doctors ever wanted to compensate for, so I worked on that by looking at and AFing on various lines at all different angles. The weaker semi normalized glasses seem better for this type of practice than full normalized would be, so I’m going to try to keep this up over the next few days while I’m still using this pair, and hopefully get rid of whatever tiny bit of astigmatism I might have. I could feel the shape of the change a bit, and noticed the floaters change shape and become less noticeable, a good sign…as if my eyes were going back to a slightly more normal shape, and the tissues were getting rid of waste materials.

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So, after getting rid of all my ciliary spasm yesterday, it’s back today after heavy computer and phone use without proper breaks to try to get my computer stuff straightened out. I did not get outside today, as it was below freezing and not very sunny. It gets dark about 5PM. I was on hold for 3 hours with a company recently, and never got through.

I have been therefore been wearing my differentials exclusively today, since almost everything has been close work. Have not even touched the semi normalized pair yet today, or done warm compresses yet.

The differentials do seem to help slightly with getting rid of ciliary spasm.

Hoping I can get rid of this ciliary spasm…each day this type of thing happens is one day lost in terms of improvement and progress.

My vision is starting to recover. I’ve started using the semi normalized again because of this.

I took far point measurements today for the first time in a long time. My method is to do three trials for each eye and then both together. I also took measurements with the differentials, and added the lens power to the results.

Today’s results (averages of 3 trials):
R: 28.25cm or -3.54D
L: 28.5cm or -3.51D
Both: 28.75cm or -3.48D

With differentials (-1.5, -1.25); (reciprocal of distance plus lens power):
R: 36cm or -4.28D
L: 37.58cm or -3.91D
Both: 39.5cm or -3.91D

I’ve said in the past that my near vision with glasses is generally worse than without glasses, and these results provide support for that observation. I had to hold my target much closer than expected to get sharp focus while wearing the glasses.

I suppose a possible explanation for this could be the suspected convergence insufficiency that I feel I probably have. Why? Because underconvergence causes accommodative convergence to kick in to compensate. This would in theory result in over accommodation at near to maintain fusion. This would explain the apparent higher myopia while wearing differentials.

This scenario is potentially problematic for kids wearing full distance powers at near, because as they keep moving closer to offset the blur from overaccomodation, the strain increases even more. It might also be what happened to that kid Jake wrote about who developed apparent 6D myopia after using a microscope.

Looks like the seasonal drop in vision has started this past week. I need to get more outdoor time.

Got outside a little while ago. Ended up switching to my next semi normalized pair, -2.75, -2.5. Right on schedule with the original plan actually. It just felt like the right time. I’m around -1 with these, so it’s a lot easier to see at distance. I’ve never ever worn this power before. I’m starting to be able to see some depth at moderate distance, something I don’t really ever remember since I’ve had glasses. There’s nothing like a nice new, clean pair of glasses, either. These are the same frames as my differential, so it’ll be better visual continuity and less variables between pairs. I hope to stick with these for 6 weeks, and then it’s back to -3, -2.75 finally. But this time I should be able to tolerate that. That will be a milestone.

I’m also trying to get every bit of progress out of each lens step along the way. I will never wear this exact power again, because when I eventually step back down, I’ll be equalized right and left.

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Just checked on my eye chart. After a whole day, testing at night under my usual indoor artificial poor light, I can see a slightly blurred 20/80 from approx. 16 feet (wall to wall) using my 10-foot chart and wearing the new glasses. So in theory that’s around 20/50 maybe. I had some glimpses of letters below, but did not push. Wanted to simulate office testing conditions, or even worse.

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How does the pair feel? Any pain or discomfort?

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None whatsoever. It feels absolutely wonderful!

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