A Closer Look at Monovision

woman happy positive smile close eye check vision ophthalmology In our last post, we discussed the issues that people with presbyopia face and how this common vision problem may be addressed. To further expand on long-term presbyopia treatment, we want to focus our attention on monovision. With concise information regarding your various treatment options, you are one step closer to saying goodbye to blurry vision and to your reading glasses.

What is Monovision?

Naturally, clear vision is obtained through teamwork between the eyes. Each eye works to support vision at various distances. Monovision is not natural. It is a type of vision that is created by correcting the stronger eye to see objects at a farther distance and correcting the other eye to see clearly at a close distance. So, to have one eye that sees up close and one that sees at a distance is not in the natural order of things; and yet, it works wonderfully! The reason why monovision can work is that the brain adapts very quickly to the new formation of visual information coming into each eye separately. As a result of the brain’s interpretation, the person with monovision sees clearly.

In the vast majority of cases, patients adapt to monovision without any issues. Once the visual center of the brain has adjusted to the way that information is coming in, vision from the out-of-focus eye get suppressed just a little. For example, when looking at objects in the distance, vision in the near-eye is suppressed. When focusing on a book or computer, the near-eye takes over and the distance eye is suppressed. When both eyes are open, the brain interprets visual information and produces a clear image.

What to Expect

Monovision can be created in one of two ways. Patients may get monovision by wearing contact lenses or by undergoing minor laser surgery. Before committing to surgery, patients may choose to “test drive” what monovision feel like with contact lens wear. It is important to note that, while monovision works very well for the majority of people who choose it, a small subset of patients may experience eye strain. This usually occurs after long periods of up-close focus, such as sewing or reading fine print. If eye fatigue were to occur after surgery for monovision, the problem may be corrected with reading glasses. Monovision may also increase the risk of visual disturbances at night, such as glare around headlights or other light sources.

Presbyopia can be corrected using a few different approaches. To learn more about monovision and discern whether it may be right for you, schedule a consultation by contacting our Skokie, IL office at 847-677-2794.

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