Contact lenses offer people with vision problems an almost invisible method of vision correction. Whether you are nearsighted, farsighted, have presbyopia or have astigmatism, you can wear contacts to improve your eyesight. But which of these lenses are right for you?
Soft contacts have a significant amount of water in the plastic mixture that makes up each lens. This water content enables oxygen to easily reach your cornea through each lens. The result is a contact you can wear comfortably without dry eyes. At the same time, you maintain better eye health through this oxygenation.
The benefits of having soft contacts include many types of disposable design. You wear your lenses for only a short period and then throw them away. Because you maintain a supply of fresh lenses and throw out older ones, you have a lower risk of infection. You also spend less time cleaning the lenses and enjoy better comfort. Many soft contacts also protect from UV rays.
Although many soft contacts are disposable, some types are not. You can also get custom-designed lenses that enable you to wear the same pair for a longer period, such as a year. You have to clean these each night.
On the negative side of soft lenses are their tendency to absorb bacteria, particles, chemicals, and mold. They absorb many irritants, such as smoke, lotion, soap, and sprays. These lenses also prove more fragile than other types, ripping and tearing more easily than gas-permeable or hard lenses.
Daily Disposable Soft Lenses
Daily disposable soft contacts do not require regular cleaning as you wear them for a day and then throw them away. This also means you do not suffer irritation, deposit build-up, or dry eyes from contact solutions. These lenses work well for people with allergies. They are highly breathable, with oxygen easily permeating through to your cornea.
Even with daily disposables, you should not sleep in your contact lenses. When you sleep, your eyes get less oxygen. This puts your eyes at greater risk for infection or serious complications.
Colored Soft Lenses
Colored soft contacts are fun and even serve a practical purpose. With eye color changing pigment added to the lenses, these contacts come in a range of shades. You can choose violet, green, amethyst, blue or other colors to suit your sense of style and give you the eyeshade you have always wanted. At the same time, you correct your vision so you can see everything.
Colored lenses are not just for eye color-changing effects. They are still medical devices like their clear soft lens counterparts. Although you can find novelty lenses on the market that do not correct your eyesight, you should never wear those. Using lenses you get without a prescription can damage your eyes. Never share your lenses with anyone else and always ensure you clean and care for your contacts properly.
Rigid Gas Permeable Contacts
Rigid gas permeable lenses are harder than soft contacts. They contain silicone and still let oxygen permeate through to your cornea. These lenses can help you see better than with soft lenses. They also work well for people with astigmatism. You easily care for them and they provide great durability.
When you first put these lenses into your eyes, they feel slightly uncomfortable. It takes several days of wear to get used to them.
As a natural part of aging, your eyes lose the ability to focus on near objects. This is presbyopia, a condition that makes reading and performing daily tasks harder. But bifocal lenses can help with this condition. They correct your far vision and your near vision at the same time and in one lens. You can also choose from soft lenses or gas permeable ones with bifocal qualities.
Toric Lenses for Astigmatism
Toric lenses correct vision for people with astigmatism. These specially-made lenses come in soft or rigid gas-permeable styles, as well as daily disposables, colored lenses and extended wear contacts.
Cornea Reshaping Lenses
If you have mild nearsightedness, orthokeratology lenses may work for you. Also called ortho-k, these lenses temporarily reshape your cornea and improve your eyesight while you wear them. These are an option to the permanent solution of laser vision correction. They work well for people who do not make good candidates for laser eye surgery.
Ask Your Eye Doctor Which Lenses Are Right for You
Your eye health is vital to maintaining your eyesight. This is why you need an experienced eye doctor who provides multiple options for your vision correction. In Calgary, Optiko Eyewear provides expert optometry with a wide selection of eyewear, including contacts and glasses. Schedule your appointment today by calling 403-457-7000 for the Sunridge Mall location or 403-457-7001 for the Market Mall location.