Kingsley Opticians in Finchley UK & European Delivery Established in 1982

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Understanding your Glasses Prescription

Understand your Prescription

What do the numbers mean on your prescription?

We have put together a simple guide on understanding your prescription. If you have any further questions, you can pop in to our shop (Finchley Central) or give us a call on 0208 346 9636

understand your prescription

The + or-  signs before your numbers

These signs represent PLUS or MINUS. 

When your sign is + (PLUS) it means that you have hyperopia. Which is also know as "farsightedness". 
When your sign is - (MINUS) it means you have myopia. Which means you can see objects near to you , however objects further away are blurry.
Sometimes the Optomoprist will right DS which mean you have no astigmatism or cylinder in your prescription.

The SPH or Sphere 

This part, is a measurment of the power of the lens in dioptres. It can be used in both MINUS or PLUS

The CYL or Cylinder

Is a measurment of the amount of astigmatism you have, which is resolved by the Cylindrical part of your lens.
If this part is blank, it means you have no astigmatism. 


This is the angle of your astigmatism, if this part is blank it means you have no astigmatism. 

The ADD or Reading Addition

If you are over 40 years old, it is common to have a reading problem. This number is the power for the additional (ADD) correction for focusing on close distances.
If this is blank, it means you can see close things very well.   

The Prism

This is uncommon part of the prescription, which indicates you have a muscle imbalnce in your eyes. It is corrected by a prismatic lens.