Near sight questions

Discussion in 'Medical Topics' started by Bill Jennings, May 25, 2005.

  1. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2005
    Messages:
    10,547
    Location:
    Southeast Tennessee
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    This page intentionally left blank
    Well, as happens with most entering their mid-40's, my near vision is going...quickly! I've been wearing contacts for far correction for decades, and the correction is not too bad, -2.25 left and -2.75 right.

    I ride my motorcycle almost daily, and enjoy using the contacts as I wear a full face helmet, and also to allow me to use available safety sunglasses in combination. (hot days in the southeast sometimes require me to ride with the shield up, thus the need for safety glasses with side shields)

    But, my close reading ability is degrading rapidly, so I am using some reading glasses at work with the contacts, but that doesn't work real well in the plane. I'd have to take them on/off, and then there is the juggle with sunglasses as well. I'm considering three options:

    1.) Have bi-focals made for flying, having both the near and far correction, in photo gray for sunglasses use as well. Just don't wear the contacts on flying days.

    2.) Have bi-focals made for flying, but made to work with the contacts. IE, no far correction, just near correction for reading charts, plates, etc., again in photo gray.

    3.) There are supposedly bi-focal contacts available, but that doesn't seem so appealing.

    I know others have been down this road, and am looking for advice.

    Also, should I cross-post this to hangar talk to get more response?
     
  2. Jim Chumley

    Jim Chumley Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2005
    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jim Chumley
    Bill,

    I've gone the route of prescription glasses and sunglasses. Three years ago, I thought about trying contacts. I did and they work fine, except for the map work. My medical requires that I have a pair of reading glasses at hand when I fly. If I have no one with me, I have to use the readers, otherwise, the map work is the the co-pilot's responsibility.

    My regular glasses are Progressives - trifocals without the lines. I have no intention of quitting the contacts. I'll be 60 on my next birthday.

    Jim
     
  3. Ghery

    Ghery Final Approach

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2005
    Messages:
    9,735
    Location:
    Olympia, Washington
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Ghery Pettit
    I've been flying with progressive lenses since I started flying. Photochromatic lenses, to boot. Work fine for me.
     
  4. Keith Lane

    Keith Lane Pattern Altitude

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2005
    Messages:
    1,637
    Location:
    Conyers, Georgia
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Keith Lane
    A good friend of mine has one contact lense for near vision and one for reading. (Monocular lenses??) I thought it sounded crazy, but he said he got used to it very quickly and now wears them like that at all times. He said that he doesn't notice it at all. The FAA, however will not approve it and he has to use glasses at the time of his medical. He keeps glasses in the A/C at all times, as do I. I only need reading glasses (from Target @$1.00 a pair) for chart reading. I'm 49.
     
  5. bbchien

    bbchien Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2005
    Messages:
    10,597
    Location:
    Bolingbrook, IL
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Bruce C
    Keith is correct. The FAA specifically disqualifies contac lens based one-near/one-far correction. It's OK to have this situation burned in, however.

    The reason for the prohibition is that when burned in, the brain locks onto "which image to accept". But with contacts, which may be in or may be out, the brain gets mixed signals. This is the medical basis behind the accident at LGA in which the 121 captain flew his airliner into the approach lights. When I find the citation, I'll add it.

    Bruce
     
  6. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2005
    Messages:
    31,266
    I have a rather unusual eye situation -- nearly 10 diopters in the right eye and only about 5 in the left. At my optomotrist's recommendation, I shifted to contacts to eliminate the image size differential and improve my vision, espicially depth perception, as well as reducing eye strain. Since I have a pretty strong astigmatic (spherical) correction along with the basic myopic (cylindrical) correction, the bifocal contacts are out -- they can do bifocal, or they can do astigmatic, but not both.

    My solution is contacts for distant vision and store-bought ($13) +1.75 reading glasses for near work. On bright days, I don't need the reading glasses in the cockpit since the iris pinpointing brought on by bright light improves my focus field enough to read the instruments and all but the fine print. However, there are times I really need sunglasses for the glare, but those open the irises and kill my near vision. Solution? I found very nice sunglasses with reading inserts (essentially bifocal sunglasses, with a zero correction in the main field) at the sunglasses store for about $20. And that's what I use in flight when I need sunglasses, with the reading glasses for IMC and night flying.
     
  7. Bill Jennings

    Bill Jennings Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2005
    Messages:
    10,547
    Location:
    Southeast Tennessee
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    This page intentionally left blank
    Bingo, gotta go find those sunglasses, and then keep the reading glasses (I'm using the $15 Wally world specials as well) for cloudy and/or night.

    Thanks!
     
  8. Jim Chumley

    Jim Chumley Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2005
    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jim Chumley
    Who makes these? Are they a common commodity at some special store? Give us a referral.

    Jim
     
  9. Alan

    Alan Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2005
    Messages:
    145
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Alan
    I think I got mine at Walgreens. I'm sure it was one of the chain drugstores. You can certainly find them online also.

     
  10. Jim Chumley

    Jim Chumley Pre-takeoff checklist

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2005
    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    Display Name:

    Display name:
    Jim Chumley
    Thanks. I'm going to check them out.

    Jim
     
  11. poadeleted20

    poadeleted20 Deleted

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2005
    Messages:
    31,266
    They are at sunglass shops around beach areas (for folks who like to read on the beach) as well as available on the internet (subject to fit/comfort issues -- better to try before you buy). I got one pair which didn't fit well via internet and the pair I now wear at the sunglasses place at the Rehobeth DE outlet mall. Check on the internet for "reading sunglasses" or "bifocal sunglasses" and you'll find a bunch of manufacturers and outlets.