What is Pupillary Distance?

Pupillary distance (PD) measures the distance between the centers of your pupils. This measurement is used to determine where you look through the lens of your glasses and should be as accurate as possible. The average adult’s PD is between 54-74 mm; kids' are between 43-58 mm. Your eye doctor will usually measure your PD during an eye exam. However, if it was not given to you, the below 5 steps will help you measure it yourself.

How to Measure Your Pupillary Distance

  1. Stand 8 in. away from a mirror.
  2. Hold a ruler against your brow.
  3. Close your right eye then align the ruler’s 0 mm with the center of your left pupil.
  4. Look straight then close your left eye and open your right eye.
  5. The mm line that lines up to the center of your right pupil is your PD.

PD = 62 mm

The average adult’s PD is between 54-74 mm; kids' are between 43-58 mm.

Why Is It Important?

Every set of prescription lenses has an “optical center,” which is determined by pupillary distance. Pupillary distance is used to determine where you look through the lens of your glasses and should be as accurate as possible.

Optical Center

Measure The Distance

Your prescription may tell you your PD. But if the PD is not available, use your friend or a mirror to help you figure it out.

Millimeter Ruler

Mirror

MEASURING YOUR OWN PD

Stand 8 in. away from the mirror

With your face straight, hold the ruler against your brow

Close your right eye and align the ruler’s zero to the center of your left pupil

While looking straight, close your left eye and open your right eye

Read the mm line that lines up with the center of your right pupil. This number is your PD

A Few Things to Note

Measure your PD 3-4 times to ensure it's accurate and consistent.

Range of Adult PD: 54-74 mm

Range of Child PD: 43-54 mm

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