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Here is a brief comparison of polycarbonate and Trivex lenses to help you decide which lenses might be best for you:
Thickness. Polycarbonate has a higher index of refraction than Trivex (1.58 vs. 1.53), so polycarbonate lenses are about 10% thinner than Trivex lenses.
Weight. Trivex has a lower specific gravity than polycarbonate, making Trivex lenses about 10% lighter than polycarbonate lenses.
Optical clarity (central). Trivex lenses have less internal stress and may produce sharper central vision than polycarbonate lenses.
Optical clarity (peripheral). Trivex lenses have a higher Abbe value and may produce sharper peripheral vision with less chromatic aberration than polycarbonate lenses.
Impact resistance. Polycarbonate and Trivex lenses have comparable impact resistance.
UV protection. Polycarbonate and Trivex lenses both block 100% of the sun's UV rays without the need for special UV-blocking lens coatings.
Availability. Polycarbonate lenses are available in a wider variety of lens designs than Trivex lenses. Photochromic lenses are available in both materials.
Cost. The cost of polycarbonate and Trivex lenses can vary considerably, but many optical stores charge more for Trivex lenses than polycarbonate lenses.
Your professional optician can discuss the pros and cons of polycarbonate and Trivex lenses so you can decide which lens material is the best choice for your needs and budget.
Polycarbonate and Trivex lenses are much more impact-resistant than regular glass and plastic lenses (including other high-index lenses) because these lightweight lens materials are relatively "soft" — which means they can absorb energy without lens fracturing.
This flexibility also means polycarbonate and Trivex lenses need a scratch-resistant coating to prevent surface scratches. Today's modern scratch-resistant coatings can make the surface of polycarbonate and Trivex lenses nearly as hard as glass.
Most eye care professionals offer a lens warranty to protect your lenses against scratches for a specified period of normal use. Ask your optician for details.
Proper Frames For Polycarbonate And Trivex Lenses
When it comes to eye safety, polycarbonate and Trivex eyeglass lenses are only part of the solution.
For the best eye protection at work and during sports, be sure you also invest in high-quality safety frames or frames designed specifically for sport eyeglasses.
Regular eyeglass frames are not rated for use as safety glasses and typically don't provide the type of eye protection needed for sports. Therefore, playing sports while wearing an eyeglass frame that is not rated for sports eyewear is dangerous and can result in a serious eye injury if the frame breaks, dislodging the lenses.
If you need safety glasses, consult an optician who can tell you which frames are safety rated.
For children's eyewear, choose a sturdy frame and lightweight polycarbonate or Trivex lenses. Even if he or she does not participate in organized sports, choosing impact-resistant eyeglass lenses and frames is an important step to protect your child's eyes throughout the day for a lifetime of good vision.