How to Convert Progressive Prescription to Reading Glasses

Progressive prescription lenses offer a versatile solution for individuals with multifocal vision needs. However, there are times when you might want to convert your progressive prescription to reading glasses for specific tasks or convenience. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the steps to effectively convert your progressive prescription to reading glasses.


Progressive lenses are known for their seamless transition between distance, intermediate, and near vision. However, there are instances when using reading glasses becomes more convenient. This guide will walk you through the process of converting your progressive prescription to reading glasses.

Understanding Progressive Lenses

2.1. What Are Progressive Lenses?

Progressive lenses, also known as multifocal or varifocal lenses, provide a smooth progression of prescription strengths to accommodate different viewing distances. They eliminate the visible lines found in bifocals or trifocals.

2.2. Reasons to Convert to Reading Glasses

There are several reasons to consider converting your progressive prescription to reading glasses:

  • Specific Tasks: Reading, crafting, or using a computer may be more comfortable with dedicated reading glasses.
  • Cost Savings: Reading glasses can be more affordable than a full set of progressive lenses.
  • Backup Option: Having reading glasses as a backup is useful in case your progressive lenses get damaged.

Consult Your Eye Care Professional

3.1. Importance of Professional Guidance

Before making any changes to your eyewear, consult your eye care professional. They can assess your vision needs and provide valuable advice on the conversion process.

3.2. Update Your Prescription

Your eye care professional may recommend updating your prescription to ensure the reading glasses are tailored to your current vision requirements.

Choosing the Right Reading Glasses

4.1. Selecting the Correct Power

The key to effective reading glasses is selecting the appropriate power. Your eye care professional can determine the strength you need based on your updated prescription.

4.2. Frame Styles and Comfort

Consider frame styles that offer comfort and fit well for prolonged use. Your optometrist can provide guidance on frame selection.

Adjusting to Your New Reading Glasses

5.1. Adapting to Single Vision Lenses

Transitioning from progressive lenses to single-vision reading glasses may require some adjustment. Practice using them for different tasks and distances.

5.2. Practicing for Different Distances

Reading glasses are typically designed for close-up tasks. Practice finding the right distance for reading, crafting, or using digital devices.

Caring for Your Reading Glasses

6.1. Cleaning and Maintenance

Learn how to properly clean and maintain your reading glasses to ensure their longevity and clarity.

6.2. When to Replace Reading Glasses

Over time, reading glasses may need replacement due to wear and tear or changes in your vision. Regular eye exams can help monitor these changes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

7.1. Can I convert my existing progressive glasses into reading glasses?

Converting existing progressive glasses into reading glasses is possible with a prescription change, but it’s essential to consult your eye care professional for guidance.

7.2. How do I know the right power for my reading glasses?

Your eye care professional will determine the appropriate power based on your vision needs and prescription.

7.3. Is it necessary to consult my eye care professional for this conversion?

Yes, professional guidance is crucial to ensure the conversion is done correctly and safely.

7.4. Can I use over-the-counter reading glasses instead?

Over-the-counter reading glasses can be a temporary solution, but a prescription from your eye care professional is recommended for long-term use.

7.5. What are some common issues to watch for when transitioning to reading glasses?

Common issues include adjusting to the fixed focal length of reading glasses and finding the right distance for various tasks.


Converting your progressive prescription to reading glasses can offer added convenience and cost savings. Consult your eye care professional to ensure a smooth and safe transition, and enjoy improved clarity and comfort for your close-up tasks.

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