Did you know that an estimated forty-five million people in the United States wear contact lenses? If you want eye correction that doesnt interfere with your appearance, contact lenses are perfect for you.
Unfortunately, there are several different types of contact lenses out there. This can make knowing how to choose contact lenses that are right for you difficult. Thats why we made this guide.
In it, well break down everything you should consider before choosing contact lenses. That way, you can get the best eye correction products for your needs.
Schedule an Eye Exam
There will likely be some clear signs that you require glasses or contact lenses. Once you notice these signs, the first step of the process will be the schedule an eye examination with a contact lens provider.
During this screening, the eye doctor will test your vision to determine how strong your contacts need to be.
Once they write your prescription, you will need to get a contact fitting. During the fitting, the eye doctor will make sure that your contacts fit your specific eyes comfortably.
Keep in mind that its common during these eye exams to screen for certain diseases, like glaucoma.
Most of the time, you will also need a follow-up screening once you get fitted. The first one happens a week after you get contacts. After that, you will come back again after six months, then once annually.
Choose Between the Different Types of Contact Lenses
Once you get fitted for the contact, you will need to decide what type you want. Generally, you can break contact lenses down into three categories: soft lenses, RGP lenses, and hybrid lenses.
Your eye doctors can help educate you about the pros and cons of each of the different options. However, its still a good idea to know more about them going into your appointment.
So, in this section, well be discussing the different types of contact lenses in more depth.
Soft lenses tend to be the most popular contact lens options out there. The main reason for this is the fact that you can wear them for extended periods of time.
The specific amount of time will depend on what type of soft lens contact you get. There are daily use soft contact lenses that you throw away after each use.
If this is too expensive for you, you can try extended-use contacts that you can reuse for two weeks. There are even extended-wear soft contact lenses. These contacts can be left in your eyes overnight for up to two weeks.
If youre wearing your soft lenses in the sun a lot, you should also consider getting ones with UV protection. The biggest benefit of soft lenses is that theyre comfortable.
But they do have some drawbacks. First, they tend to soak up irritants a lot quicker. So, theyre not great if you live in an area with a lot of pollution. Theyre also a lot more fragile than other types of contact lenses.
Next, there are RGP contact lenses (also known as Rigid Gas Permeable contact). These types of contact lenses arent as popular as soft lenses. But they do provide much sharper vision.
This makes them a better option for people with astigmatism or individuals that just underwent refractive surgery. However, this increase in vision comes with some drawbacks.
First, theyre not as comfortable and take longer to get used to. Next, they require a lot more maintenance compared to soft lenses.
Finally, theres a higher chance that they may become dislodged when you perform physical activity.
Cant decide between wearing contact lenses that are soft or rigid? Consider getting hybrid lenses. These contacts have a rigid center thats found in RGP lenses. But, the outside of the contact has a soft ring.
This gives the individual the sharpness of rigid contacts with the comfort of soft lenses. The only downside is that they do tend to be more expensive.
How to Choose Contact Lenses That Are Right For You
If you still arent sure which types of contact lenses are right for you, dont panic. All you need to do to decide is consider a few questions. The first question is, How often do you plan on wearing contact lenses?
If you want to wear your contact lenses every day, then either soft or rigid lenses are fine for your needs. However, if you only want to wear your contact lenses for special events or on the weekend, we recommend soft contact lenses for this purpose.
Thats because in order to be comfortable in the eyes, rigid contacts need to be worn all of the time.
The second question you need to answer is, How sharp do you want your vision to be? Its true that all contact lenses will bring a degree of clarity to your vision. But rigid lenses have been known to provide much sharper vision than soft lenses.
Because of this, theyre good options for people suffering from astigmatism.
The last question you need to ask is, How much contact lens care do I want to put into them? Both rigid and soft lenses will require daily cleaning. But, rigid lenses typically require a lot of extra work to keep sanitary.
And, if you skip cleanings, you increase your risk of an eye infection. So, the extra sharp vision that comes with rigid lenses can be a drawback for some people.
Need Contact Lenses? Get In Touch With Kentucky Eye Institute
We hope this article helped you learn how to choose contact lenses that are right for you. If youre worried about choosing the wrong type of contact, the most important thing is to find a professional with enough experience to help you.
Here at the Kentucky Eye Institute, our 60+ staff is capable of everything from optical health to surgical eye care. So, if youre ready to see clearly and look great doing it, make sure to contact us today.