Stuff I Like - Vision Improvement Gimmicks

These days I’m an emmetrope plagued occasionally by minor amounts of astigmatism and self-inflicted eyestrain from phone and computer use. Everybody here knows already the core (entirely correct) tenets of EndMyopia that you need more outdoor time and to be practicing active focus on far-away things and you want to limit your usage of (addiction to?) smartphones and screens. You know you need outdoor hobbies that are going to get you using your distance vision.

So, here’s my totally subjective opinion of of things that are outside of the core EM in case anybody wants to compare notes.

Eye exercises for astigmatism: These actually seemed to help me. The ones I have tried include taking an image that makes astigmatism obvious (like a spiral, or the block and fan test) and then moving away to a distance where the astigmatism rears its ugly head, and trying to move your eyes around the entire image while keeping in mind that the lines should all look the same. You can also rock your head a little, move your head around so you’re looking from different directions, roll your eyes to the extremes of their range, etc. Practice when you’re outdoors of looking around as if you were tracing a rainbow on the horizon. After you experiment with the various astigmatism test images for a while you get a good sense of what astigmatic blur looks like when it shows up, and you can try to clear it whenever it appears just like active focus with myopic blur.

Plus lenses with base-in prism: If you read Dr Haberfeld’s article from the 1930’s he recommends these lenses to halt myopia progression because they prevent accommodation in near work but also prevent your eyes from having to converge to focus on near (thereby simulating distance better than plus lenses alone.) It costs an extra $20 to put prism in from the online vendors, I’ve experimented with a couple of different strengths and they all seem to help. Don’t try walking around with them though, because they severely distort perception of space and distance. (I tried cooking with them on and it looked like everything was tilted and about to slide off the stove.) They’re great for looking at a book or laptop screen or your phone for a while.

Colored lenses for headache relief: I have read that some migraine sufferers experience relief or a reduction in headache frequency with red lenses. There are online vendors who sell red glasses designed for headache sufferers. I did the poor-man’s version and just ordered fashion red-tinted sunglass plus lenses for computer-viewing, it seems to do the trick.

Colored lenses for sleep / melatonin production: I have some +0.75 readers with heavy orange tint, they’re great for late at night. Of course, everything looks so interesting through orange lenses that you may end up staying up even later…

Intermediate Office lenses: Kirkland HD Multipurpose from Costco, a big disappointment, they’re supposed to be plano (no correction) on top, with a big intermediate zone for the computer and a small viewing area on the bottom for the phone or reading, to me they seem to have annoying distortion no matter which way I look through them.

Eyezen enhanced single vision lenses: I have these in a couple of plus strengths and I’m a big fan (Jake will surely mock me). They put more plus in the bottom of the lens (depending on which version you get), but they don’t seem to have the annoying distortion all-over-the-place of multi-focal lenses. They’re supposed to have “anti-fatigue” effects and they actually “work” for me, especially when a notification comes in on the phone while I am using the computer.

Eye Vitamins: First choice is always to get your diet on point so that you’re getting most of your nutrition from food. I’ll admit that I’m a sucker for “preventative medicine” in general so my view on it is that supplementing lutein and zeaxanthin, citrus bioflavanoids and bilberry, alpha-lipoic acid, etc is probably harmless and possibly useful on top of trying to keep the diet on-point.

Lens coatings These actually seem pretty useful. The first few pairs of glasses I ordered online I saved the extra $5, but once you figure out what frames you like and what kind of lenses you want, the superhydropobic, oleophobic and anti-reflective coatings are all nice to have.

Sunglasses I love sunglasses, they provide a good excuse to get outside. I try to take them off from time to time to give the pupil a chance to contract all the way and get a little bit of UV and Blue-Light exposure. Yellow or Brown lenses do some interesting things that increase contrast and make it more fun to look at things. I’m not the most “emo” person but colored lenses definitely seem to impact my mood. I have no idea if everybody is that way or if it’s just me. But if you’re bored and have never tried the various colored lenses it’s kind of fun to screw around with. It provides a little novelty, if nothing else.

Transition lenses these are kind of cool in a geeky way, I haven’t found any that get as dark as real sunglasses yet (maybe they’re not supposed to.) Another excuse to go outside.