Bioptic glasses (Driving)

Losing your ability to safely drive due to low vision can be extremely demoralizing, as it greatly limits your personal freedom. There is good news though, and that is that there are specialized bioptic glasses designed for use while driving that can help you reclaim that independence and quality of life, despite your low vision. There are states that allow special permits for driving with bioptic glasses, enabling you to drive as you wish. 

Bioptic glasses (Driving) in Santa Clarita

What are Bioptic glasses?

Many are familiar with magnifying glasses as they can help people with low vision zoom in on what you’re trying to see. The problem is that magnifying glasses can only be used to view objects nearby. What if someone wants to view objects that are at a distance? That’s where the telescope comes in because it is a visual aid that magnifies objects that are at a distance, enabling you to see clearly even if you are looking at something far away. 

Bioptic glasses are worn like regular glasses, and they have a telescope mounted on the top part of one or both lenses. The advantage of having the telescope only on the top part of the lens is that you can choose when to use the telescope if you are looking into the distance by slightly tilting your head downwards. When you look directly ahead or downwards you are looking through the regular part of the lens, known as the carrier lens, which has your regular glasses prescription. 

Amplify Eyecare Santa Clarita

What are the challenges of driving with low vision?

If you struggle with low vision, you may become accustomed to walking very close to signs or various objects in order to see them, however when you’re driving if you wait until you get close to something in order to see it, it’s most likely too late as driving demands a high level of awareness and preparedness. Additionally, in order to get your driver’s license you have to pass an eye exam which can be challenging with low vision. Many people can have these issues solved by using bioptic telescope glasses which are allowed in certain states if you pass the requirements for a special permit. 

How can bioptic glasses help while driving?

The bioptic telescope glasses are ideal for driving because driving has so many visual demands at various distances which makes it a challenging activity for someone with low vision. When you drive you need to be able to see up close in order to be aware of what is directly in front of you on the road, and on the dashboard. In addition, it is crucial to be able to see clearly at a distance in order to view the signs up ahead and to be able to see the roads and cars in the distance. Bioptic telescope glasses can help you achieve clear vision at all distances, despite your low vision diagnosis.

While driving, most people find that the majority of the time they are looking through the carrier lens and only 2-3% of the time do they tilt their head to use the telescope. The telescope is similar to using the side and rear view mirrors, in that it’s only used for short periods of time, but it’s still extremely helpful. A study was done on people who drive with bioptic telescopes and 90% said that they would continue driving with the bioptic glasses, even if it wasn’t required by the state in order to drive.

How can bioptic glasses help while driving?
How do you know if you need bioptic glasses for driving?

How do you know if you need bioptic glasses for driving?

When you want to get your driver’s license, you take an eye exam at the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles). If you don’t pass that test, you go to the eye doctor who does a more extensive eye exam. If you do not meet the general visual acuity requirements to get your driver’s license, your eye doctor will evaluate if you can benefit from using bioptic telescope glasses. Some states have a system where if you pass the necessary requirements you can get a permit to drive with the bioptic glasses. If you have any questions about this process and to find out if you are eligible to use the bioptic glasses for driving, please call Amplify EyeCare Santa Clarita at (661) 775-1860 to book an appointment.

How do you know if you need bioptic glasses for driving?

Low Vision Consultation

We welcome you to come to Amplify EyeCare Santa Clarita where Dr. Carl Garbus, FAAO will do a full low vision eye exam and assessment. If you are a candidate for driving with bioptic telescope glasses, Dr. Garbus, FAAO will discuss with you the entire process and will answer your questions. Our staff will be happy to guide you every step of the way from learning how to order the bioptic glasses to training how to drive with them. It would be an honor to be a part of your journey in finding your independence with the ability to drive using the bioptic glasses.

Dr. Garbus, FAAO cartoon

Summary

Bioptic glasses are an extremely helpful low vision device which is especially useful while driving, as it allows the wearer to quickly switch to a higher magnification to focus on specific distant objects. If you have low vision and you are interested in learning more about bioptic glasses, we invite you to contact Amplify EyeCare Santa Clarita at (661) 775-1860 to schedule an appointment for a low vision eye exam and consultation, or you can click here to Book an Appointment . Patients with low vision visit our clinic from all over California, and we are proud to be a leading provider of low vision services for patients from Santa Clarita, Palmdale, Lancaster, and San Fernando Valley.

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Testimonials


  • My eight year old daughter was terrified to go to the eye doctor for fear of her eyes being dilated. The doctor was SO KID friendly! He immediately made her comfortable by engaging her in conversation. It was a geat experience.


    Joya B.

  • Dr. Garbus spent an amazing amount of time to solve my very complicated visual problems. Over the years he has continually achieved results beyond what others felt possible. He is always up to date on the latest science. He is great!


    Dolores K.

  • Family Vision Care Valencia makes it so easy. Staff is knows what they are doing and Dr. Garbus is thorough and kept me well informed during the exam.


    Kristy B.

  • I have been coming to Family Vision Center for almost 20 years. Dr. Garbus has been able to help my vision when other doctors could not. Now my kids see him as well. I highly recommend this office!


    Autumn C.

  • The Doctor is very good. I felt on this visit he seemed rushed. I had questions to ask him but he was already with another patient. I still do not know if my eyes are the same , worse, or better.


    Howard B.

Testimonials


My eight year old daughter was terrified to go to the eye doctor for fear of her eyes being dilated. The doctor was SO KID friendly! He immediately made her comfortable by engaging her in conversation. It was a geat experience.


Joya B.

Dr. Garbus spent an amazing amount of time to solve my very complicated visual problems. Over the years he has continually achieved results beyond what others felt possible. He is always up to date on the latest science. He is great!


Dolores K.

Family Vision Care Valencia makes it so easy. Staff is knows what they are doing and Dr. Garbus is thorough and kept me well informed during the exam.


Kristy B.

I have been coming to Family Vision Center for almost 20 years. Dr. Garbus has been able to help my vision when other doctors could not. Now my kids see him as well. I highly recommend this office!


Autumn C.

The Doctor is very good. I felt on this visit he seemed rushed. I had questions to ask him but he was already with another patient. I still do not know if my eyes are the same , worse, or better.


Howard B.

All the staff is friendly, helpful and knowledgeable, and has been for all the years I have been going there.


Mary Ann H.
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