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Home » Eyeglasses » True confessions of an eyeball doctor » {Part 5} ​Dark side #2: You have to measure your own PD​… whatever that is​.

{Part 5} ​Dark side #2: You have to measure your own PD​… whatever that is​.

Speaking of measurements, to order any eyeglasses, you need the accurate distance from pupil to pupil, or pupillary distance (PD). Measuring your own PD is like trying to cut your own hair.

Having trimmed my own bangs only to have my stylist cluck her tongue at me and shake her head at my sad, sad attempt… Let’s just say that I’ll never do that again. PD isn’t just about fit, and the glasses looking right on your face; PD tells the lens makers where to center your prescription​.

Wrong PD means you might as well be wearing the wrong prescription! For the most accurate PD, you must go to an optician​. Even scarier than PD self-measurement is the notion of “average PD,” which one optician discovered on a leading site. That’s just crazy talk. No one​ has an “average” PD​, and don’t let any online retailer tell you otherwise.

Dark side #3: A good deal doesn’t guarantee good quality

A good deal doesn’t mean that you’re getting the same quality for less money​. In fact, a large study found that about half of online glasses ordered came with the wrong prescription or other problems! Oh no! No bueno.

Naturally, La Vida would never have been one of those retailers—but no matter who you shop with, I want to make sure that you have all the facts that you need to make a good decision.

The American Optometric Association (AOA) performed a study where 200 pairs of eyeglasses, for adults and children, were ordered from 10 of the most popular online optical vendors. Of the 200 pairs ordered, only 154 pairs were received. So wait… What happened to those other 46 pairs? Lost in cyberspace? And of the pairs delivered, 44.8% had incorrect prescriptions or safety issues. That’s really bad.

That’s a 1 in 4 chance you won’t get the glasses you ordered, and 1 in 2 that if you ​do​ get them, they won’t be what you ordered, your correct prescription or even dangerous. ​No bueno. ​An incorrect prescription can give you blurred vision, or cause discomfort. Lenses that don’t meet federal safety standards can shatter and hurt you or your kids.

There are more disadvantages that I could list to shopping online for eyeglasses, but those are my top three. (If you geek out on information like me, you can learn more in this AOA brochure.)

[Read more here.]