Ophthalmic Dispensing An Evolving Concept

SEED Contact Lens


It is a well-known fact that good eyesight is the essence of a happy life. Poor eyesight most certainly degrades the physical abilities, mobility, earnings and standard of living. There is a massive proportion of the population who have poor eyesight which may be correctable or it may well be uncorrectable as well depending upon the underlying cause of poor eyesight. Among the people who have correctable poor eyesight, “Refractive Errors” are one of the leading causes. Apart from natural causes, raised eye health awareness and extensive near work ( studying, use of computers and mobiles ) in recent times has also amplified the occurrence of refractive error markedly. In recent times every other person wears eyeglasses which is excellent. Eyeglasses not only provide us with good eyesight but it also offers protection to our eyes from injuries, trauma and foreign bodies. With the increase in eye health awareness, there is a noticeable increase in people opting to use eyeglasses or eyewear, whether corrective or protective.


There are few things the general public must know after getting their eyes checked and before getting their eyeglasses made. Eyeglasses can be equally bad, faulty and uncomfortable if they are not made correctly. Making and fitting corrective eyeglasses is always a tricky thing. There are few mandatory steps that must be followed while making eyeglasses to provide with maximum benefits. Ophthalmic Dispensing covers all these mandatory steps that are required to make and fit spectacles.

What is Ophthalmic Dispensing?

After you get your eyes checked by your eye doctor , you get a prescription (power) if you are required to wear eyeglasses. Ophthalmic dispensing is the process of making and fitting corrective eyeglasses and eyewear using the prescription given by your eye doctor. It  includes,
  1. Measurement of face and frame eg. distance between two eyes (PD), frame’s arm’s length (temple length), etc.
  2. Recommending appropriate type of corrective spectacle lens and frames depending upon the patient’s age, profession, daily routine, prescription, skin allergies and patient’s desire, etc.
  3. Reconfirmation of the power of lenses to be fit according to prescription and lens marking.
  4. Fitting the lenses correctly according to the measurements taken.
  5. After the spectacle is made, double-checking every measurement is correct before giving the spectacles to the patient.


Why is ophthalmic dispensing necessary?

There is this basic principle of light, that the light passes undeviated through the centre of any optical lens. The same principle applies while making eyeglasses. The eyes, frames and the optical lenses must be aligned and centred in a straight line to provide you with optimal vision and comfort. If they are not aligned and centred, the light can not pass through the centre of optical lens, resulting in induced prismatic effect, which degrades the quality of vision and comfort level and leaves you with tons of problems with your new glasses. Ophthalmic dispensing makes sure the eyes, the frame and the lens all are aligned in a same straight line to provide you with optimal vision and comfort level and a reason for you to love your new pair of eyeglasses.
Cat eye glasses and smile

Warning signs

There are few signs everyone can look for after wearing the new spectacles in order to make sure the new spectacles are made correctly:
  • Poor eyesight.
  • Eye ache (pain).
  • Headache.
  • Eye strain.
  • Inability to wear the spectacles for a longer period.
  • Double vision.
  • More comfortable taking off spectacles than wearing them, etc.


These are very easy signs that everyone can notice after wearing the newly made spectacles. If none of these upper mentioned signs occurs, the spectacles are made correctly. However, some higher power lenses can still cause such problems even if they are made correctly, but they disappear within a few days. If you have these problems after wearing the new spectacles and continue to have them even after a good few days, then there must be something to review in the newly made spectacles.


Who are the most affected?

Not everyone may notice such problems. Anyone who wears prescription more than (+) / (-) 1.00 diopter, anyone who wears prescription of mixed power eg (+) lens and (-) lens etc. combined in one , anyone who wears lenses for distance and near made in one spectacle (bifocal), anyone who wears no-line bifocals (progressive or varifocal) lenses, are the ones highly likely to experience such issues if the spectacles are not made correctly. Although some very observant and sensitive people with prescription less than (+) / (-) 1.00 diopter may also experience such issues.
These upper mentioned things are a few things that everyone in the general public must know before getting their glasses made. The glasses you are wearing has to be optically correct. There are a large number of people who know that their eyes are weak and they require eyeglasses, but they don’t wear eyeglasses because the glasses are not comfortable or they can’t wear the glasses for a longer period. There are also a considerable amount of people who do not like to get a new pair of eyeglasses and choose to wear the old ones even if they are bent or broken or scratched because they feel the new glasses will be uncomfortable to wear. It is very true, there are people who suffer this every day and there is a valid reason behind that.
eye glasses in Nepal
The concept of Optical dispensing and measurements before making a pair of new glasses is not a new concept in developed countries. For example, every glasses made in a country like England, are strictly made following all the necessary steps of Optical Dispensing. And the results there, are strikingly surprising. Almost everyone wears their glasses easily and happily and comfortably.  The good news is ophthalmic dispensing is evolving in our country too in recent times. There are many opticians in Nepal who follow the basic rules of dispensing. But the sad part of it is, there still are many people who unfortunately do not bother to care about dispensing while making the glasses. We just need to be a little wise and intelligent about our choices. We can always choose a reputable and experienced optician to get our glasses made from. Eyesight is everything. The world won’t be this colourful and vibrant if we do not have good eyesight.
Abhijeet Sarkar
Ophthalmic Assistant
Pratulika Opticians
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