Considering Contact Lenses?
Our knowledge and experience fitting complicated and unusual cases leaves patients ecstatic about their vision with contact lenses. Contact lenses are much more user-friendly than previously thought. Start by understanding the advantages and disadvantages of common varieties of contact lenses-- as well as the ground rules for minimizing the risk of eye infections.
Types of Contact Lenses
Soft Contact Lenses
Most popular in the United States and worldwide are soft contact lenses. This is because soft contact lenses adapt to the contour of your eye, they're comfortable and tend to stay in place well. This makes soft contact lenses a favorable option if you participate in sporting activities or have an active lifestyle.
Soft contact lenses can assist in the correcting a variety of vision conditions, such as:
- Nearsightedness (myopia).
- Farsightedness (hyperopia).
- Age-related loss of close-up vision (presbyopia).
- Obscured vision (astigmatism).
Soft contact lenses can be found in many varieties such as:
Daily Wear: Typically, the least expensive contact lens alternative, daily wear soft contact lenses are worn during the day, and removed each night to be cleaned and disinfected. How long will daily wear lenses typically last? Lens life is usually 30 days, but there are contact lenses that are bi-monthly, quarterly and bi-annual, depending on the manufacturer.
Daily Disposables: Daily Disposable soft contact lenses are the most convenient but typically the expensive choice. You wear the lenses throughout the day and throw them away at night. They do not require cleaning or disinfecting. Simply wearing them for the specific time suggested and then dispose of them.
Daily disposable lenses are a great choice if you wear contacts only occassionally, or dislike the time caring for and disinfecting contact lenses, or ease is very important to you. Most manufacturers package either 30 or 90 day supplies.
Extended Wear: Although they must be removed for cleansing and disinfecting a minimum of once a week, extended wear soft contact lenses can be worn while you sleep. It is still very important to be careful with overnight use, as it increases the risk of eye infections and abrasions, even if the lenses are permitted for extended wear.
Hard Contact Lenses
hard contact lenses, also called rigid, gas permeable lenses, provide clear, crisp vision for many vision issues. Hard contact lenses are a wonderful choice for patients who have tried soft contact lenses and been disappointed with the results. As well, hard contact lenses are traditionally more breathable than are soft contact lenses, which decreases the risk of eye infections.
Most hard contact lenses must be removed for cleaning and disinfecting at night. It may even take up to a week to adjust to hard contact lenses, and they are more likely to slide off of the center of your eye than are soft contact lenses, which may cause a little soreness and or blurred vision.
You could easily use the exact same set of hard contact lenses for approximately two to three years as long as your prescription remains the same and you take proper care of them.
Depending on your vision needs, your eye doctor at Lakeside Vision in Plano, TX may suggest specialized contact lenses, such as:
Color Tinted contact lenses Some contact lenses are tinted, to be worn for cosmetic, theatric or therapeutic purposes. For example, to enhance color perception or adjust for color blindness. Make sure to stay away from costume or cosmetic contact lenses which can easily be purchased from unreliable sources and can harm your eyes and spawn possibly damaging eye infections.
Bifocal or Multifocal contact lenses These contact lenses, available in soft and hard types, help to correct nearsightedness, farsightedness, as well as astigmatism.
Hybrid contact lenses Featuring a hard (gas permeable) center bordered with a soft outer ring, Hybrid contact lenses are a great option if you have an uneven corneal curve from high astigmatism, keratoconus, or are post-surgery, or if you have difficulty with traditional hard lenses. Hybrid contact lenses provide the crisp vision of a gas permeable lens with the soft lens comfort.
How to get the best fit
Once you decide you are ready to try contact lenses, call us at Lakeside Vision and Optical of Plano, for a detailed eye exam and contact lens fitting. We will also set up follow-up examinations as recommended by your eye doctor. A follow-up check will usually be scheduled for after one week, one month, six months, and then yearly thereafter.
If your eyes are dry
Dry eyes can be an issue for contact lens wearers even with proper use as well as care. If you experience itchy or red eyes we recommend that you remove your contact lenses and apply lubricating eye drops. If you experience blurry vision or eye pain, or any other concerns, remove your contact lenses immediately and contact your eye doctor at Lakeside Vision and Optical for treatment immediately.
Keeping clear of eye infections
Wearing contact lenses of any kind increases the risk of corneal infection, simply because contact lenses lower the amount of oxygen which the corneas receive. Although sometimes eye infections are unpreventable, there are things you can do to help decrease your risk of contracting an infection.
Infection prevention Employ good eye hygiene: Make sure to wash and dry your hands thoroughly before handling your contact lenses. Remove your contact lenses before retiring at night. This pertains to extended wear contacts as well. Even though extended wear contacts are made to be used overnight, consistent wear greatly increases the risk of eye infections. Please use good common hygiene sense.
Minimize contact with water Remove your contact lenses before taking a shower, use of a hot tub or go swimming. Do NOT moisten your contact lenses with your saliva. Please, refrain from ever putting your contact lenses in your mouth to moisten them! This can damage your lenses. Use only commercially sold sterile products made specifically for the type of contact lenses you have, not water or any kind of homemade saline solution. As well, make sure to always dispose of the solution in the contact lens holder each time you disinfect the lenses. Do not simply add a little bit of new solution to the used solution that's already in the case.
Scrub and rinse your contacts Very carefully rub your lenses while you're cleansing them, even if you are using no-rub solution. Do not use contact solution which is has expired.
Replace contact lenses cases and contact lenses Always follow manufacturer guidelines for replacing your contact lenses, and replace your contact lens holders every 3 to 6 months.