For young people, the prospect of wearing glasses can evoke a fear of looking overly studious and not ‘cool’ and for adults it can lead to a feeling they are ageing.

Nevertheless, getting regular professional eye consultation is essential for eye health, as is picking the correct eye wear or contact lenses and following an optician’s advice.

Furthermore, children who are unaware they need glasses, or do not wear them, tend to do less well at school.


Are children more emotionally capable than adults?

In this case yes, Fiona Fylan, a Reader in Psychology at Leeds Metropolitan University, has studied the impact on different age groups getting used to wearing glasses and believes the young tend to cope best.

“You find that most kids get over their concerns and just get used to wearing glasses,” she says.

“However, if you’re middle aged and you’re suddenly prescribed glasses you’re likely to feel that you’re now part of the older group at work or in your social circle. Wearing glasses is seen as a sign of age and so people can have confidence issues. It’s so important that they get a pair they feel they look good in.”


Wearing glasses: The feel good factor

The factor which gets most people used to wearing glasses is a combination of the benefit they offer and a growing feeling of confidence that they look good in their new frames.

“When I talk to opticians, I always point out the benefit of making a person feel good in their glasses by making them look good,” says Fylan. “If someone has the glasses that make them feel confident they are more likely to wear them. The crucial factor is generally that they actually need the spectacles and so the use outweighs any image concerns.”


Fashion item

The good news for those prescribed spectacles over the past few years is that fashion brands have seen a huge opportunity in eye wear and the frames available today are well designed and colourful.

"Spectacles have become really trendy high street fashion items."

“When you look back at the frames children used to be offered there’s just no comparison,” she says. “Now, you’ve got a huge range of different looks and colours. Spectacles have become really trendy high street fashion items. At the same time, lenses have got a lot thinner so they look a lot better and they’re more comfortable and lighter to wear.” This can help people feel more attractive, a vital component for boosting self-confidence.

Also, today, there have been advances in contact lens technology which give glass wearers a better range of choices than before.