Depending on your lifestyle, your motivation and the health of your eyes, contact lenses may provide a safe and effective alternative to eyeglasses when used with proper care. The health of the corneal surface and tear film are very important to your comfort and the clarity of your vision when you are wearing contacts.
Many different plastics are used in the manufacture of contact lenses, but basically there are two general types of lenses: hard and soft.
Hard lenses include the transparent plastic contacts that were first developed in the 1960s but are rarely used today and rigid gas permeable (RGP) contacts. RGP lenses may be the best choice for patients with high astigmatism or allergies to protein deposits which can accumulate on soft lenses.
Soft lenses are the choice of most contact lens wearers for their comfort as well as for the great number of options available including disposable, extended wear, colored, toric lenses for astigmatism, and specialty lenses for dry eye.
For patients over the age of 40 with presbyopia (age-related loss of near vision), one option is monovision contact lenses. Monovision lenses correct one eye for distance vision and correct the other eye for near vision. There are also bifocal contact lenses available as both a RGP and a soft lens which can help provide a full range of vision.
For patients with irregular astigmatism, previous corneal surgery or other special considerations, there are newer hybrid contact lenses which are RGP in the center with a soft lens skirt, and can have the advantages of both types of lenses.
Lenses that are worn overnight or not properly cleaned increase the risk of eye infection, and those that are old or not properly fitted may scratch the eye or induce blood vessels to grow into the cornea. Because a lens can warp over time, and the cornea can change shape, the fit of the contact lens and the power should be re-evaluated on a regular basis. Your return visits will be scheduled depending on the condition of your eyes and visual needs.
Dr. Hahn and Dr. Shumaker at Brightbill/Ericson Eye Associates New Vision Laser Center are both contact lens specialists and have experience with a broad range of specialty contact lenses to suit your needs and expectations. They will educate you regarding your options and work with you to take care of your vision and the health of your eyes.For more information and to schedule an appointment, contact us today.