Wednesday, 3 May 2017

5 Things Nobody Told You about Eyeglasses

While not everyone who has to wear them loves them, eyeglasses are pretty remarkable creations. Enabling those who cannot see clearly on their own to achieve 20/20 vision when the right prescription is selected, these tools can be lifechanging for those who previously muddled through their days squinting and straining to see everything around them.

For folks who need some reasons to fall in love with eyeglasses, here are a few interesting facts about these handy vision-correcting devices:

They’ve been around for centuries – Although just who is responsible for making the very first pair of eyeglasses remains a matter of historical debate, the first records indicating the use of prescription lenses date to the 1280s. The creations were, of course, cumbersome by today’s standards, but were reportedly lauded as major breakthroughs for the vision impaired.

Sunglasses have been around a long time, too – While folks in the 12th century may not have necessarily known about the sun’s damaging UV rays, they did understand bright light could be problematic. Sunlight, after all, leads to squinting, which can impair vision. With that in mind, the first sunglasses were reportedly developed in China during this period. The lenses evidently made from smoky quartz. 

Major advances took some time to arrive – Good old Benjamin Franklin is credited with a long list of inventions, including one that had major impacts for people who suffered for common vision concerns. This American Founding Father is credited with creating the first pair of bifocals to address simultaneous concerns with myopia and presbyopia.

Frames evolved over time – Eyeglass frames have undergone a major evolution since their initial introduction. Early frames were reportedly made of copper, wood, lead or even bone or leather. A French optician is credited with creating the first frames that more readily resemble those made today.

Corrections for astigmatisms are a fairly recent advance – While corrective lenses had been around since the 1200s, people who suffered from astigmatism didn’t find effective relief until the 1820s. England’s Sir George Biddle Airy is created with the creation of the first lenses to address this concern.

While it’s easy to take glasses for granted today, these devices that transform vision in the blink of an eye have a pretty extraordinary history.

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