Contact lenses, when used properly, are very convenient and, with the latest advancements in technology, are extremely comfortable. Most of the time you will hardly know you are wearing them, though you will certainly notice how clear your vision is. Contact lenses are small lenses worn on the surface of the eye to correct vision.
We are happy to discuss the options available for you. Many patients choose contact lenses for their primary vision correction and glasses for back-up or part-time wear.
Many patients prefer to wear glasses for the majority of their day, but have activities and events where they'd rather not wear their glasses and choose contact lenses for these times.
If you are a first-time wearer, click here for wearing instructions.
Contact Lens Types
The type of contact lenses available has literally exploded in the past five years. There are now contact lenses available for almost everyone. New contacts are being introduced every year, meaning many of our patients were unable to wear contacts in the past are finding great success with them now. You owe it to yourself to see what is new. We carry many options, and promise to do our best in selecting contact lenses that you will love wearing. The following is a brief list of some of the options available. During your contact lens appointment a significant portion of the exam is spent discussing your visual needs in order to determine which contact lens style and design will best suite you.
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Disposable Soft Lenses
Disposable soft lenses are worn for a period of time and then, of course, thrown away. The most well-known disposables last for two weeks to one month. There are also one-day disposables. These are perfect for many patients who were told they could not wear contact lenses because of allergies or mild dry eye conditions. They have a low cost per lens and are also popular for athletes and hobbyists who do not necessarily want to wear contact lenses every day.
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Tinted Soft Lenses
With tinted soft lenses, you can change or enhance your eye color. Even if you do not need corrective lenses, you can use colored contacts to change your eye color. It is important to be fitted by an eye doctor for colored contact lenses even if you do not need a prescription; wearing the wrong style can damage your eyeball.
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Bifocal Soft Lenses
A modality of contact lens that has made great strides in design and usefulness is the greatly improved bifocal soft lenses. Most patients past their 40s who need bifocals can now enjoy the comfort and benefits of soft contact lenses.
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Toric Soft Lenses
Toric lenses are used to correct astigmatism. Astigmatism is a vision condition where an irregularly shaped cornea affects the vision. In the past, the only options for those with astigmatism were either glasses or hard gas permeable contact lenses. But toric lenses now offer an alternative. There are several types of toric lenses to choose from.
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Extended Wear Soft Lenses
Extended wear lenses are the result of new technology in lens materials that transmit more oxygen to the cornea of the eye. Some of these lens materials can be worn up to 30 days, day and night, without removal. Extended wear lenses can last one week, two weeks, or one month, depending upon the lens material and your doctor’s recommendations.
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Rigid Gas Permeable (RGP) Lenses
As the name implies, these lenses are hard and gas permeable. If you’ve been told you cannot wear soft lenses, RGP lenses are often a great alternative. RGP lenses are available in specialized designs to correct just about any vision disorder. RGP contacts are also very useful in managing eyes or prescriptions that are uncommon such as after eye injuries, surgeries, Keratoconnus, etc.
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There are a variety of solutions available from many different manufacturers. The important thing to remember is that not every solution is right for every type of contact lens. Some contact lenses require the use of multipurpose solutions, while others require separate solutions for the four steps in contact lens care: disinfecting, cleaning, rinsing, and enzyming. Use only the lens solutions that are recommended by your eye doctor. If you wish to change brands, check with our office first.
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Contact Lens Instructions
Few things affect the quality of your life more than your eyes-never put them at risk. Contact lenses are prescription medical devices. To make sure your eyes and vision stay healthy while wearing contact lenses, please follow these few guidelines or the instructions recommended by your doctor.
Ocular complications and/or long-term corneal damage are the consequences of contact lenses that are worn longer than recommended. Oftentimes, your lenses will still feel good even when you are over-wearing them. Do not wear your lenses overnight unless they are approved for extended wear and your doctor has discussed this with you. Overnight wear increases the risk of infection and other complications.
It will take at least a few days for your eyes to get used to wearing contact lenses. The best way to insure maximum visual comfort and keep your eyes healthy is to patiently and faithfully adhere to this wearing schedule.
||Gas Permeable Lenses
Oftentimes, your lenses will still feel good even when you are over-wearing them. Following are some basic Do's and Dont's of Contact Lens Care:
- DO let yourself blink naturally.
- DO rewet your lenses when they feel dry.
- DO wash your contact lens case once daily with warm water, no soap and allow it to air dry.
- DO review your instruction sheet from time to time.
- DO clean and disinfect your lenses every night if daily wear, or upon removal if extended wear.
- DO immediately remove the lenses if eyes become red or irritated. If redness or irritation persists after rinsing the lenses and reinserting them, remove the lenses and call the office for a checkup.
- DO have your lenses checked regularly at recommended periods.
- DO wear your contact lenses for at least 3 hours before your follow-up appointment unless you are experiencing discomfort.
- DO apply make-up after your lenses are inserted.
- DON'T swim or use a hot tub while wearing contact lenses.
- DON'T wear the lenses beyond the prescribed interval. Daily lenses should never be worn in an extended wear basis.
- DON'T wear your lenses overnight unless they are approved for extended wear and your doctor has discussed this with you. Overnight wear increases the risk of infection and other complications.
- DON'T handle the lenses without first washing your hands.
- DON'T change solution, use those recommended by this office.
- DON'T put contact lenses in your mouth.
- DON'T rinse soft lens with tap water.
- DON'T use eye drops other than the lubricants. If you are using medical drops, tell the doctor and he will advise you. Don’t insert your contact lenses for 4 hours after using ocular decongestant. (Murine, Visine)
- DON'T be careless with hand creams, hairsprays or makeup.
- DON'T wear contact lenses in the presence of noxious and irritating fumes or vapors. It is possible for gasses as well as liquids to be absorbed by the soft lens material.
- DON'T wear contact lenses if your eyes are red or irritated
- DON'T panic if the lens goes off center. Remember a lens cannot become lost behind the eye, due to the eye’s anatomy.
Contact Lens Informed Consent & Compliance Agreement
Risks of Contact Lens Wear
The use of contact lenses is not without risk. A small but significant percentage of individuals wearing contact lenses develop potentially serious complications which can lead to permanent eye damage and vision loss. Specifically, extended wear contact lenses pose the risk of complication 5 to 15 times greater than that of daily wear. Presbyopic contact lens corrections (monovision or bifocal contact lenses) can create vision compromises that may reduce visual acuity and depth perception for distance and near tasks. For the extended wear patient, extra care is necessary to help prevent eye-health complications and for presbyopic patients, supplemental or alternative vision correction during hazardous activities is advised.
Contact Lens Disinfection, Wearing and Replacement Schedule, and Follow-up:
The solutions prescribed are specific for your eyes and lenses. Since solution contents vary significantly from one manufacturer to another and cross-reactions are possible between different brands, do not change or substitute solutions unless you check with your doctor first. Use of improper products may result in lens damage or eye irritation.
Recommended Lens Disinfection System:__________
Wearing Schedule: Day 1:__________hours, Add__________hours per day as long as your eyes, “Look Good, Feel Good And See Good” throughout the day.
Lens Replacement: Every__________days/ weeks/ months, Follow-up Appointment__________days/ weeks/ months.
Your contact lenses Are / Are NOT approved for overnight wear up to__________consecutive days.
In the beginning it is normal, if:
Remove your lenses IMMEDIATELY, if you:
- Your eyes itch or feel funny
- You are more aware of one lens
- You have trouble handling your lenses
- Your vision seems fuzzier than with your glasses
When in doubt, take them out and call our office, or go to your local emergency hospital.
- Develop unusual pain
- Experience stinging or redness
- Have unusually foggy or blurred vision that does not clear
- Have any discharge or unusual light sensitivity
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