Transitions is the brand name for the lenses that automatically change from light to dark when you go outside. These lenses are wonderful…if you take the time to become an educated consumer. I prescribe these lenses for all children because practically speaking, they are NOT going to have two pairs of prescription eyewear, one clear and one for sun. Can you imagine a slew of second graders all whining to their teachers that they cannot go out side because they left their prescription sunglasses next to the Wii at home? Not gonna happen. Kids are perfect candidates for transitions because the lenses change as quickly as they do. When they go outside to play, the lenses are activated by the UV and change to a sunglass gray or brown. When they come inside, the lenses lighten to clear after just a few minutes. Strangely, these lenses do seem to work better in the cold.
However, I hear from adults all the time that they are not satisfied with their Transition lenses and I feel responsible in part as a member of the eyecare industry that has been inept at educating patients prior to an eyewear purchase. As I mentioned above, these lenses are activated by UV exposure. Therefore, if you move from your kitchen, into your garage, into your car and drive away….they will not get dark. TRANSITIONS LENSES ARE NOT DESIGNED TO WORK AS DRIVING SUNGLASSES (which is when many of us want sunglasses). The windshield from the car blocks UV. So, unless you open the window and stick your head out (I have seen people doing this on Sheridan Blvd 🙂 ) they won’t get dark. Nevertheless, if you are just someone who likes an adjustable tint when you go for a walk to get the mail or when you are gardening, these lenses can be great! But, in short, don’t purchase Transitions lenses as an alternative to two pair but rather as an ‘enhanced’ clear pair. You will still want and need your polarized sunglasses when driving East on a Colorado morning. Talk to my optician Judy any time you have questions about this lens. She is happy to help and I am happy to volunteer her services 😉