Is Astigmatism Causing Your
Night Blindness?

Page Title

If you’ve experienced eye strain or watering while driving after dark, proper night driving glasses could be a simple solution to give your eyes a break and stay safe on the road. Read on to learn about different types of night driving glasses and lenses and what can affect your vision at night.

What Are Night Driving Glasses?

A pair of night driving glasses with yellow lenses held in front of a steering wheel

Night driving glasses typically have non-prescription yellow or amber-tinted lenses and can be purchased over the counter. Yellow-tinted lenses for night driving help to filter out blue light, the light most likely to cause glare when it enters the eye.

Because night driving glasses are non-prescriptive, they will not help with other issues that may be impeding your vision at night. This is important, considering most night driving issues are caused by astigmatism, which requires a prescription.

If you have prescription glasses and have trouble seeing at night, non-prescription night driving glasses won’t be much help. Instead, we recommend anti-reflective coated lenses, which can be applied to your prescription glasses. Anti-reflective lenses significantly reduce glare and discomfort at night while still letting your eyes absorb the full spectrum of light.

What Are Anti-Reflective Coated Glasses?

A pair of prescription glasses with anti-reflective coating

Anti-reflective (AR) coated glasses work in conjunction with your prescription lenses to safely and effectively reduce glare while enhancing your vision during darker hours. AR coated glasses allow more light to transmit through your lenses, while minimizing the distraction of unwanted halos and glare.

If you’re managing astigmatism , or simply dread driving after the sun goes down, AR lenses can bring you clearer visibility, less eye strain and a safer, more comfortable driving experience.

Night Driving Glasses vs. Anti-Reflective Coating

When it comes to improving night-time vision, both night driving glasses and glasses with anti-reflective coating offer unique features.

Night driving glasses are typically non-prescription eyewear with yellow or amber-tinted lenses designed to filter out blue light and reduce glare.

On the other hand, anti-reflective coating, often applied to prescription glasses, significantly reduces glare and enhances vision by allowing more light to transmit through the lenses.

To better understand the differences, let's look at a side-by-side comparison of each:

Night Driving GlassesGlasses with Anti-Reflective Coating
Glare Reduction Helps reduce blue light which can cause glare Significantly reduces glare by allowing more light transmission
Vision Enhancement Can potentially reduce visibility by blocking light Enhances vision in low-light conditions and at night
Prescription Usually non-prescription and available over the counter Typically applied to prescription lenses
Help with Eye Conditions N/A Helpful for people with astigmatism
Effectiveness Varied results; can sometimes impede night vision Consistently improves night vision by reducing glare and enhancing clarity

How to Tell if You Need Night Driving Glasses

View out of a car at night with glaring streetlights and a blurry truck

Determining if you require night driving glasses and/or anti-reflective coating begins with recognizing certain signs or changes in your vision. It's important to pay attention to your comfort and clarity of sight when driving at night.

Here are some signs that might indicate you could benefit from night driving glasses or AR coated lenses:

  • Glare sensitivity: If headlights, traffic lights, or streetlights create a strong glare or halo that disturbs your vision, you might need glasses that c ombat this effect.
  • Trouble adjusting to light: It takes your eyes a long time to adjust when moving from brightly lit to dimly lit conditions, or vice versa.
  • Accidents or near misses: If you've had accidents or close calls that were due to poor visibility at night, it's crucial to address this issue as soon as possible.
  • Recommendation from an eye doctor: Your eye doctor can provide the most definitive answer. If they suggest you need night driving glasses or an anti-reflective coating, it's wise to take that advice seriously.

If you're experiencing any of these issues, don't hesitate to schedule an eye exam. Pearle Vision is here to help you make the best decisions for your eye health and safety on the road.

Factors that Can Affect Your Night Vision

Here's a quick look at several factors that might be affecting your night vision:

  • Astigmatism: A common condition where the cornea is irregularly shaped, causing blurry vision that may worsen when driving at night or in low light conditions.
  • Diabetic retinopathy: High blood sugar can damage nerves and blood vessels in the retina, which may lead to difficulty adjusting vision in different light settings and poor night vision.
  • Vitamin A deficiency: Lack of adequate retinol (Vitamin A) in your diet can interfere with your retina's ability to process images accurately, potentially leading to issues with night vision.
  • Post-LASIK complications: Some individuals might experience issues like glaring halos around objects or increased sensitivity to lights after undergoing LASIK surgery, both of which can impede night vision.
  • Retinitis Pigmentosa: This is a genetic disorder that damages the retina and can cause vision loss. An early symptom of this is difficulty seeing at night.
  • Night Blindness: This term is used to describe a variety of vision problems that become noticeable in low light or at night, such as difficulty adjusting to changes in light intensity.
  • Excessive screen time: Prolonged exposure to device screens can cause glare or reflection, potentially straining your eyes and affecting your night vision.
  • Cataracts: This condition causes cloudiness of the lens, resulting in blurry vision. Cataracts also cause light from traffic or headlights to dominate your field of vision and appear as a halo or glare. Luckily, night driving after cataract surgery can improve since the cloudy lens is replaced with a clear, artificial lens.

Additional Tips to Enhance Nighttime Driving Visibility

Beyond using anti-reflective coated glasses, there are several other steps you can take to improve your visibility while driving at night. Here are some practical tips to aid your night driving experience:

  • Regularly clean your glasses: Always make sure your glasses are clean before driving. Smudges, dirt, and fingerprints can create additional glare and distort your vision.
  • Maintain your windshield: Ensure your windshield is clean, both inside and out. A dirty windshield can cause light scattering and make it difficult to see clearly at night.
  • Dim interior lights: Excessive light from your dashboard or overhead lights can impair your forward vision. Keep them dim to prevent reflections and light scattering inside the vehicle.
  • Adjust rearview mirrors: Angle your rearview mirrors to reduce the glare from headlights behind you. This can also help in maintaining a broader view of the road.
  • Stay alert and take breaks: Fatigue and drowsiness can dramatically reduce your reaction time and ability to focus, especially at night. Schedule breaks during long drives to stay alert.
  • Regular eye exams: Regular eye exams can help detect vision problems early. If you're having trouble seeing at night, it might be a sign of an underlying condition that needs attention.
  • Practice defensive driving: Anticipate potential hazards and maintain a safe distance from the car ahead of you. The more distance you have, the more time you'll have to react to any situation.

Remember, these are measures to complement your night driving glasses or anti-reflective lenses—not replace them. Together, they can enhance your safety and confidence while driving at night.

Choosing the Right Night Driving Glasses

At Pearle Vision, we want you to have the best vision possible, day or night. If you’re worried about how astigmatism or other factors are affecting your night driving, our eye doctors can help you update your prescription and get AR-coated glasses for night driving.

Our prescription night driving glasses use anti-reflective-coated lenses to help reduce glare that can occur from bright lights outside. Prescription glasses with anti-reflection can:

  • Reduce glare by up to 78%
  • Offer UV protection
  • Be scratch resistant

Whether you prefer large frames or cat-eye glasses, find the style you love with our broad collection of designer brands, such as Ray-Ban, Oakley, Coach, Vogue, and more.

With many types of lenses to choose from, our eye care experts can help you find the perfect pair for your night driving glasses. Book an appointment at your neighborhood Pearle Vision EyeCare Center to update your prescription.

Night Driving Glasses FAQ

What glasses help with night driving?
Anti-reflective coated glasses are the most effective for night driving. The coating on these lenses minimizes glare and reflection, enhancing contrast and overall visual acuity in low light conditions.

How do night driving glasses work?
Night driving glasses, especially those with anti-reflective coating, work by reducing the glare and reflection from high-intensity lights. This enhances contrast and improves visibility in low light conditions.

How to get glasses for night driving?
It's as simple as visiting your nearest Pearle Vision EyeCare Center. Our experts will guide you through an eye exam and help you choose the right anti-reflective coated lenses for your night driving needs.

Are yellow lenses good for night driving?
While yellow lenses are often marketed for night driving, they may not be the best option. Some studies suggest that they could reduce visibility by blocking some light from entering your eyes. Instead, lenses with anti-reflective coating are recommended.

Why do I struggle with night driving?
Several factors could contribute to difficulties with night driving, including age, certain medical conditions, and the glare from oncoming vehicles' headlights. If you're experiencing trouble, it's a good idea to schedule an eye exam to rule out any underlying conditions.

How often should I update my prescription for night driving glasses?
Updating your prescription depends on your individual eye health. Generally, it's a good idea to have an eye exam every one to two years, or more frequently if you notice changes in your vision.

Can anti-reflective coating be added to any glasses?
We can add an anti-reflective coating to most prescription glasses. The process involves applying several layers of metal oxides to the lenses, which helps to minimize glare and maximize the amount of light passing through to your eyes.


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