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How to Order Eyeglasses Online

Getting your prescription
Common Abbreviations
Reading your prescription
     Sphere Power
     Cylinder Power
     Cylinder Axis
     Add Power
Standard RX Range
Selecting a Frame
What is my Pupillary distance (PD), and how do I obtain it?
Expiration Date
How to order single vision glasses
How to order bifocal glasses
How to order progressive glasses
Order Online

Getting your prescription: Before you order, you need to have a copy of your prescription. You may already have a copy from a previous eye test. Otherwise, you will need to go to your a local Doctor and have your eyes tested.

Following the eye test your Doctor is required to give you a copy of your prescription and you shouldn't feel under pressure to purchase glasses from that Optical Store.

While you are getting your prescription ask them to provide your PD as it will be required to order your eyeglasses. It is a simple measurement that they will usually have on file.

Common Abbreviations: Following are many of the abbreviations you may find when placing your order.

SPH - Sphere Power
DS - Diopters Sphere; Sphere Only
CYL - Cylinder Power
X - Axis; X 50 means axis 050
PL - Plano; No Power
O.D./OD - Oculus dexter; Right Eye
O.S./OS - Oculus sinister; Left Eye
O.U./OU - Oculi uterque; Both Eyes
NV/NVO - Near Vision or Near Vision Only
ADD - Bifocal addition power; Reading Add
P.D./PD - pupillary distance; the distance between the right and left pupil in millimeters

Reading your prescription: If your eye doctor determines you need corrective lenses he or she will write an eyeglasses prescription for you at the end of your exam.  This prescription specifies the lens powers required to correct your vision. 

A prescription for eyeglasses cannot be used to purchase contact lenses or vice-a-versa.  Contact lens prescriptions contain additional information that can only be determined during a contact lens fitting.  

At a minimum, your eyeglasses prescription will contain the following information:  your name, the prescribing doctor's name, the date of the exam, and the sphere power, cylinder power, cylinder axis, prism power and orientation, and add power of the lenses. 

Your prescription may contain the abbreviations OD (oculus dextrus) and OS (oculus sinister) to specify lens values for your right eye (OD) and left eye (OS).

The numbers on your RX form may be written as -1.50 or as -150 they are the same just some Doctors use a shorthand and do not use the decimal point.

 Sample Eyeglasses Prescription Form

Sphere Power: The sphere power indicates the lens power prescribed to correct nearsightedness or farsightedness.  Eyeglass lenses are normally prescribed and manufactured in one-quarter diopter (0.25 D) increments. 

If a sphere power has a minus sign (-) preceding the diopter value, the lens is a concave lens for the correction of nearsightedness.  Concave lenses (also called minus lenses) are thicker at the edge of the lens and thinner at the center. 

If a sphere power has a plus sign (+) preceding the diopter value, the lens is a convex lens for the correction of farsightedness.  Convex lenses (also called plus lenses) are thicker at the center and thinner at the edge.  Convex lenses are also used in reading glasses and are added to the bottom portion of bifocal, trifocal, and Progressive lenses to correct Presbyopia.

Cylinder Power: The cylinder power indicates the lens power prescribed to correct astigmatism.  If you have astigmatism, your eye is shaped like a football rather than a baseball.  

Like sphere power, cylinder power is measured in diopters (D), in 0.25 D steps.  Cylinder power is usually specified in minus-power format, but may be written in plus-power format as well. 

If you have no astigmatism, the cylinder power and cylinder axis columns of your prescription will be left blank.

Why are some prescriptions written with + cylinder and others in - cylinder?  Some ophthalmologists and a few older optometrists write prescriptions in plus cylinder form. Many years ago, refracting instruments and spectacle lenses were ground with the cylinder correction on the convex, front surface and hence the rationale for plus cylinder notation. During the last 20 years or so, most refracting instruments and nearly all spectacle lenses have been ground with the cylinder correction on the concave, rear surface.

You may enter your cylinder power as plus or minus cylinder as written by your Doctor. Be assured your glasses will be fabricated for the proper prescription.

Cylinder AxisMost eye doctors use three digits to describe all meridian locations (e.g. "001" instead of "1"; "090" instead of "90"). 

The range for Cylinder Axis will be 1 to 180. If you do not have a cylinder power you will not have a cylinder axis 

Prism: In some cases, your doctor may prescribe prism power to help your eyes work more efficiently as a team an/or stay in proper alignment. 

Prism is added to an eyeglass lens prescription only if a problem with eye teaming or eye alignment is detected.

Unlike the diopter units used for sphere power and cylinder power, prism diopters are usually expressed in fractions (i.e.1 1/2) rather than in decimal units.

If prism power is prescribed, a second value called the prism base (or simply, base) is included to indicate the direction (in, out, up or down) of the prism in the lens.  

Add Power: If you have presbyopia or other near focusing problems, your doctor may write an eyeglasses prescription that includes an add power.  The add power is extra magnifying power added to the lower part of your lenses so you can see near objects more clearly.

Lenses used for add powers are always plus-power lenses, typically within the range of +1.00 to +3.00 D.  Add powers are nearly always equal for both eyes.

Lens prescriptions that include an add power can be used for bifocals, trifocals, and progressive ("no-line bifocal") lenses.

Standard RX Range: Our standard production range is +/- 7.00 Sphere up to a -4.00 cylinder. Add powers 100 to 300. Additional RX powers may be available (depending on lens styles) please contact us for details and price quotes.

Selecting a Frame The easiest way to get the right frame size is to get the dimensions from a comfortable pair of glasses you already have.

Frame Measurments

The Lens Height is a matter of choice, but the other two determine the fit.

They do not need to be exact, but the closer they are to your existing pair, the more likely your new glasses are to be a comfortable fit.

The following guidelines may help in your frame selection.

Body Size Lens Bridge Arm/Temple
Small female 46-48 16-18 130-135
Avg. Female/Small Male 48-50 17-20 135-140
Avg.  Male/Large Male 50-52 17-20 135-145
Large Male 52-58 18-22 140-150

What is my Pupillary distance (PD), and how do I obtain it? PD is the distance from the center of the pupil (black spot) in one eye to the center of the pupil in the other eye. This   measurement improves the positioning of your lenses within the frame you have chosen. It can be provided in minutes by your optician or doctor, so we recommend that you ask for it when you have your eyes tested, or you may use our self measurement tool (here)

Someone with training in the field of optics can accurately measure your pupillary distance, or you can make an approximate measurement yourself using a ruler, with someone's assistance or a mirror. The measurement will usually be taken twice: 1st with the patient focusing at a distance, and 2nd with the patient focusing at something close. The second measurement is used for reading glasses  however the rule of thumb is that the so-called "near PD" will be 3MM less than the "far PD"

Expiration Date: In addition to noting the date of your exam, your eye doctor may include an expiration date on your eyeglass lens prescription.  If no date is listed will will accept your Doctors prescription if it is less than 5 years old.

How to order single vision glasses: Single vision lenses are our most popular lens and are what is required by most of our Patients. They are made to your prescription strength and either suit glasses for Patients with near-sightedness or far-sightedness. We recommend them to everyone who has not been specifically advised to get bifocal or other lenses. The can be made to assist near or distance vision.

How to order bifocal or trifocal glasses: Bifocal and Trifocal lenses can be ordered  and are for customers who require multiple strengths of lenses.

As standard we use D28 bifocal lenses. For trifocals we use 7x28. These are 28mm wide "D" shaped segments that are positioned vertically according to our SureFIT© technology and horizontally are centered on your pupillary distance.

If you would like them to be positioned further up or down (higher or lower) then do state on your order.

We can also make up D35 bifocal (and 8x35 trifocal) lenses which at 35mm are slightly wider.

Just go through the normal order process, and choose 'the lens style you desire.

How to order progressive glasses: Progressive lenses can be ordered at an extra charge and are for customers who are seeking a full range of normal vision

Progressive lenses are fitted using our SureFIT©technology for each frame to provide maximum field of vision.

If you would like them to be positioned further up or down (higher or lower) then do state on your order in mm the location - we do however advise against this and recommend using our SureFIT©technology heights.

Just go through the normal order process and choose the style progressive you desire.

Order Online: Click "Buy Now" on the web page of each pair of frames you wish to order. You will be guided through each step of the process, and will also have the opportunity to enter specific notes and instructions regarding your order. When placing your order, you may choose optional lens shape and sizes, when offered.

Each frame you select will be added to your shopping cart, which you can view at any time by clicking the View Cart link found at the top of every page. You can update and edit your choices before submitting your Final Order, which is done on your Shopping Cart page. All online orders are placed through our secured server, where your information is encrypted for security.

Your completed order will be shipped to you in approximately a week to 10 days. Factors that can affect completion time are the lens material specified, the complexity of your order and any options you may order.

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