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Almost Anyone Can Wear Contacts

           There are many types of contact lenses available today. Almost anyone can be successfully fit with contact lenses, even those who have failed in the past.  That may have occured because of poor vision, discomfort, difficulty inserting and removing lenses, difficulty in caring for lenses and cost.  Those objections have mostly been solved with modern contact lenses.  

Comfort

         Modern contact lenses are more comfortable because they are made out of materials which are more compatible with the eye. Discomfort was often the result of lenses that did not allow the proper amount of oxygen to get to the eye or that trapped waste products behind the lens.  Therefore lenses became less comfortable the longer you wore them. Lenses also became less comfortable as they aged.  These problems have been solved with advanced materials that allow the lens to breath and that resist deposits.  Disposable lenses also solve many problems because they are replaced before problems occur.  Some lenses are replaced as often as every day so there is never any possibility of the lens becoming contaminated or damaged with wear.  Two week and monthly disposable lenses are available in more complex prescriptions.

Another issue with discomfort is dryness

        Sometimes lenses are not comfortable - not because anything is wrong with the lenses - but because the eye is not in a healthy, moist condition and anything in the eye will be less comfortable than normal.  We now have many more options available to treat dry eyes and allow contacts to be worn more comfortably.

Good vision is now expected

         You may have been told that you couldn't wear contacts because you had astigmatism or because you needed bifocals.  Both of those objections have been overcome with toric lenses for astigmatism and multifocal lenses for bifocal wearers.  In many ways contact lenses will give you better vision than glasses because you will have better peripheral vision.  If you wear bifocal or progressive lens glasses you will have a wider field of view and have less need to look through just one small part of the lens. Sometimes a gas permeable lens - a modern day version of a hard lens - will give the best correction.  Contact lenses are definitely not a "one type fits all" correction. The proper lens designed just for your needs will give the best vision.

Vision Correcting Contact Lenses

         A good option for many is a special type of a rigid lens called a "Corneal Refractive Therapy" lens.  This lens is only worn at night and reshapes the eye overnight so that vision is normal during the day -  without the use of glasses or contact lenses.  This is an especially exciting lens for young people involved in sports or other physical activities and who are too young for LASIK vision correction.

Extended Wear Lenses

        These lenses help solve the problem of difficulty inserting and removing lenses since they can be left in the eye, day and night, for up to 30 days.  They have been fully approved by the FDA for this kind of wear.  Lenses also come in a "handling tint" which makes them easier to see when inserting or removing them.

Cleaning and Disinfecting

         This is not nearly the problem as in the past because disposable lenses have made this much less of an issue.  The lenses are simply thrown away before they become contaminated.  The modern day lens care solutions that are recommended are much simpler and easier to use and cause less irritation.

Contact Lenses Must Be Replaced As Prescribed

          Contact lenses have become so successful and trouble free for many that they think of contacts as carelessly as a personal item of clothing or cosmetics to be worn however they want and replaced whenever they want.  They don't realize that contact lenses are medical devices that undergo extensive testing at the cost of many millions of dollars before they are approved by the FDA.   They must be fit and prescribed by eye doctors with an expiration date just as any other prescription medication. The schedule as to how often they are worn and replaced is part of the prescription and is necessary to assure safety. (Prescription medicines also have usage schedules -  such as "twice a day".  If you only used them once a day or as often as you thought you needed to they would not be optimally effective.)

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