Depending on your lifestyle, glasses can be more of a nuisance than helpful. If you’ve ever had rain on your glasses, purchased clothing based on the color of your glasses, struggled to keep your glasses on while doing something active, or experienced annoying glares while driving , you know what we mean. Thankfully, contact lenses have come a long way and can be a perfect alternative.
Types of Contacts
Today, there are contact lenses for a wide variety of eye needs and issues. Your eye doctor can help you determine which kind of lenses are right for you.
Soft Contact Lenses
Soft contact lenses tend to be the most common because they can treat a variety of vision concerns. Because they are made of soft, flexible plastics, soft contact lenses allow oxygen to easily pass through to the cornea. You’ve probably heard of Acuvue, Soflens 66, Purevision, Air Optix, Extreme H2O, Avaira, Biofinity, Proclear, and Focus Night & Day. These well-known contact lenses are soft contact lenses and available in our office. .
Rigid Gas-Permeable Contact Lenses
Rigid gas-permeable contact lenses are made from silicone materials, and, as their name suggests, are more rigid than soft contacts. Although rigid gas-permeable lenses have a reputation for not being as comfortable as soft lenses, users tend to have better vision with rigid gas-permeable lenses than they do with soft contacts. In addition, this type of lens can treat astigmatism and is quite durable.
Cosmetic/Colored Contact Lenses
Cosmetic or colored lenses have the comfort of being a soft lens; however, they allow you to add a little flair. Cosmetic contacts are perfect for changing eye colors or adding an element to a costume. If you do not have trouble with your vision, you can still order cosmetic lenses to change your look.
Toric Lenses for Astigmatism
If your astigmatism is large, you may need toric lenses. Toric lenses can be soft or rigid gas-permeable. They have two powers in one lens -- one to correct the astigmatism and another to treat nearsightedness or farsightedness.
Bifocal Contact Lenses
As we age, presbyopia and other vision issues are almost inevitable. This is why so many of people over age 40 wear bifocal glasses. Thankfully, bifocal contact lenses are now also an option. Like bifocal glasses, bifocal contacts include prescriptions for nearsightedness and farsightedness in the same lens. A professional fitting is required in order to find success with bifocal contact lenses.
Monovision Contact Lenses
If you are both nearsighted and farsighted, monovision contact lenses are another option. Bifocal contact lenses have two prescriptions in the same lens; however, monovision contact lenses do not. Instead, a contact lens to treat nearsightedness is prescribed for the dominant eye, and a contact lens to treat farsightedness is prescribed for the other. While monovision contact lenses work for some, others find them very irritating. Adapting to monovision lenses takes time.
Are Contacts Right for Me?
While contacts can be a great alternative to glasses, contacts aren’t for everyone, which is why it is important to see your eye doctor. Your optometrist will be able to tell you if you’re a candidate for contacts after an eye exam. That said, there are a few things you should consider.
A Prescription Is Necessary
Even if you order your contacts online, you must have a prescription from an eye doctor, meaning annual eye exams are required. When you order contacts online, you will either need an updated copy of your prescription or the vendor will contact your eye doctor. If your prescription is expired, you cannot order new contacts.
While various contacts require different cleaning techniques, proper hygiene is extremely important for contact lens users. Failure to practice good hygiene can lead to infections, various eye diseases, and other vision-related issues. If you are not willing to follow your doctor’s orders, do not wear contacts.
Contacts have come a long way; however, some people still experience dry eye as a result of contact lenses. If your eyes are already dry because of poor blinking habits or due to allergies, refrain from wearing contacts or have a pair of glasses to wear on days when dry eye is a problem.
Talk to Your Doctor About Contacts
Approximately 30 million Americans are reaping the benefits of contact lenses. Your eye doctor will be able to help you determine if you are a candidate for contacts and which type and brand are right for you.
At Mather Vision Group, we have contacts available to target a wide variety of eye needs and issues. We are focused on taking the time to give you the best comfort and vision, not just adequate comfort and vision. Learn more about Mather Vision Group’s contact options here.
Mather Vision Group is a local eye practice located in Lafayette, Indiana. Contact our office to schedule an appointment or stop in to see our large variety of eye glass frames at our Lafayette Indiana vision center.
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