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A prescription is essentially required for making eyeglass lenses and frames. The optician is legally obliged to offer you with a prescription copy following a comprehensive eye test. If you don't have this then it is essential you ask for it at the end of the test session. It is important to ensure that your eyewear prescription is no older than two years. Your suggested intervals between the tests differ depending on your required health and age.

Reading an eyewear prescription whether it is for lens or frame is quite easy if you know what the abbreviations stands for.


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  • OS: This stands for Left eye
  • OD: This stands for Right eye
  • SPH: 'SPH' states the lens strength needed for correcting the focus

o A(plus): For correcting long-sightedness

o A (minus): For correcting short-sightedness

  • Add: 'Add' is referred as the additional correction needed for reading for making your progressive lens.
  • Axis: You will only have Axis if you don't have CYL on your eyewear prescription. This will indicate where you have the astigmatism in your eyes. The measurement provided is in degrees which is marked between (0-180)
  • CYL (cylinder): This is an abbreviation for Astigmatism. This is optional and hence you can leave this place blank if it is not applicable in your case while filling out an online form for placing your order at an online optical store.
  • Pupillary Distance (PD): This measurement is the distance between your pupils. To make this measurement work best we would require aligning the lens center with pupils. In case this measurement is not present in your eye prescription you can measure it yourself. But it is best suggested not to be done alone at home. Expert help would be better as this is a very important measurement requirement.

When ordering spectacles with the help of your prescription it is essential to enter the correct details and signs so that you don't end up with the wrong pair of eyewear with which you will not be able to see. When ordering your spectacles online it is very important to have your prescription right in front of you as you would have to enter the details or send a scanned copy to the customer service team of the store for further clarifications. It is unlikely that you will come face to face with the eyewear supplier and hence it is essential that you provide him with the prescription details.

By learning about the signs, measurements and figures you can understand your prescription and eye condition which will facilitate in making sound decision for the purchase of your spectacles. So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and learn the details today before you go in for another eye check-up and purchase. And, you will surely find the difference in your confidence while you are placing your order.

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