Reading Glasses Strength Guide

Reading Glasses Strength Guide 1


In the course of your life, you will face a time when your vision will begin to deteriorate. This change often occurs with aging and may require the use of reading glasses to comprehend smaller print.

If you have enjoyed perfect vision during your earlier years, don’t worry, this change is perfectly normal.

There is a tendency for average vision to deteriorate around the age of 40 as a result of changes in the lens of the eye caused by the aging process. The technical term for this condition is presbyopia, which refers to a natural, age-related change in the lens of the eye which makes focusing on small print and close-up objects more challenging.

There is a possibility that the condition may gradually worsen as you reach 60 years of age, depending on the type of near distance work you are performing. Of course, since everyone is different, the rate at which the condition can progress varies from person to person.

Which reading glasses are most suitable for me?

There is a high likelihood that you will be able to correct your vision problem with reading glasses if you have never previously required prescription glasses to correct issues such as shortsightedness, longsightedness, astigmatism, etc. As soon as you notice the symptoms of presbyopia, these can be easily acquired.

It is important to note that due to the progressive nature of presbyopia, people approaching 40 may benefit from the use of low power reading glasses. These are non-prescription sunglasses which are available directly from our website under the heading “reading glasses”.

You will need stronger reading glasses as you age – typically around the age of 60 – and these can also be obtained without a prescription.

What strength reading glasses do I need?

As the lens power increases, the diopter strength of the reading glasses increases by 0.25 diopter.

Typically, reading glasses have a power ranging from 0.75 diopter to 3.00 diopter, indicated either by a permanent marking on the inside of the frame or by a removable sticker on the lens.

  • +0.75

  • +1.00

  • +1.25

  • +1.50

  • +1.75

  • +2.00

  • +2.25

  • +2.50

  • +2.75

  • +3.00

When purchasing reading glasses, you should keep in mind that the higher the number, the greater the strength of the lenses. For example, glasses marked with 1.0 are low power, while those marked with 3.0 are high power.

A diopter chart can be used to conduct your own reading glasses test. Using the chart, position it approximately 14 to 16 inches away from your eyes (or how you would read a normal-sized print) in order to determine the lens strength that you need. In any case, this information should only serve as a guide to help you decide what strength of reading glasses you will need.

Choose reading glasses strength ‘by age’

By consulting a ‘power by age table’ such as the one below, you may also be able to determine which strength of reading glasses you require:

  • Age 40-44 – Recommended power +0.75 to +1.00 dioptre

  • Age 45-49 – Recommended power +1.00 to +1.50 dioptre

  • Age 50-54 – Recommended power +1.50 to +2.00 dioptre

  • Age 55-59 – Recommended power +2.00 to +2.25 dioptre

  • Age 61-65 – Recommended power +2.25 to +2.50 dioptre

In the event that you are unable to decide between two sets of reading glasses, you should select the glasses with the lower power. Opting for reading glasses with too high a power can make you feel nauseated and dizzy.

For optimum clarity and comfort, consider purchasing several pairs of reading glasses, each with a different strength of lens, for various tasks (e.g. reading, looking at a mobile device or computer screen, etc.).

Which glasses frame is right for me?

There is no right or wrong way to choose reading glasses. It is completely up to you what style and design you choose. It may be that you prefer a simple pair of reading glasses or a flashier pair of designer specs.

The shape of your face will affect which frames are most appropriate for you, so make sure you select a frame that complements your face shape and is comfortable to wear.

I’ve bought reading glasses, but I’m still struggling to read

Consider having your optician examine your eyes if your vision is blurry despite wearing reading glasses, or if you’ve noticed a drastic decline in the quality of your vision.

How to buy reading glasses

Whether you are looking for new reading glasses or a new pair of sunglasses, we have an extensive selection at Low Cost Glasses. Select the lenses in accordance with the number you have selected once you have selected your frame, then add the right & left sphere diopter power you will need. You are now ready to use your new reading glasses!