The world of Contact Lenses can be quite overwhelming so we compiled an easy list of all the contact lens basics.
Contact Lens Materials:
Silicone hydrogel (Si-Hy) and hydrogel lenses are soft material contact lenses. Hydrogel lenses were the first mass produced soft contact lenses and are still used even today due to the fact that they may be more lipid resistant than the newer generation of lenses. Silicone hydrogel contact lenses are advanced soft lenses that allow more oxygen to pass to the cornea as compared with hydrogel lenses.
Monthly: These lenses are designed to be replaced every 30 days. It is easy to remember this if you plan to replace your lenses on the first of each month.
Daily Disposable: These lenses are replaced after every use. This is ideal for recreational/sportswear, allergy sufferers or people who enjoy the feeling of a fresh lens with each and every use.
Spherical Contact Lenses:
Spherical contact lenses correct nearsightedness (Myopia) or farsightedness (Hyperopia) and are indicated by a minus or plus in your prescription.
Toric Contact Lenses
Toric contact lenses are special lenses that correct astigmatism (a vision condition that causes blurred vision due to either the irregular shape of the cornea or the lens in side of the eye), which can accompany either nearsightedness or farsightedness.
Extended Wear Contact Lenses
Some contact lenses are approved for occasional and/ or frequent overnight wear (some up to 30 days). Ask your doctor if you are a candidate for this option!
Multifocal lenses are designed to provide good vision for people with presbyopia (an age related eye condition in which there is a gradual loss of your eyes’ ability to focus on near objects). These lenses strive to provide comfortable vision at distance, intermediate and near ranges. In multifocal contact lenses the prescriptive powers are blended across the lens and your visual system will learn in time to select the proper prescription for the moment depending on the task at hand. These lenses are available in different materials and replacement schedules.
2. Monovision Modality.
Monovision is another option for presbyopic patients. With Monovision, you wear a contact lens in your dominant eye to correct your distance vision and another lens in your non-dominant eye to correct for near (some people can get away with wearing only one lens). Although with each eye individually you will not see as well at all distances your brain should adapt so that when using both eyes you will be able to see distance, intermediate and near comfortably.
3. Other presbyopic options.
An alternative to these options you may want to consider is being fit with contact lenses that will correct your distance vision optimally and then wear a pair of reading glasses, OTC readers, or bifocal readers as needed over them.
Although they may be slightly more expensive, name brand solutions are always best to use as part of your contact lens care regimen. The generic solutions are simply older generation formulas with less benefits as compared with the sophisticated brands your doctor recommends. Furthermore, the ingredients in generics frequently change within each store brand making it more difficult to determine the cause should contact lens complications arise.
1. Multi-purpose solution: These are dual-purpose liquids that both clean and disinfect your contact lenses with a simple rinse-and-store method. Although these solutions are called “no rub” it is recommended you do add a short period of mechanical rubbing to remove debris/deposits from the lens surface.
2. Hydrogen Peroxide based solutions:These care systems are preservative-free and are often recommended for contact lens wearers who may be sensitive to preservatives and disinfecting agents found in multipurpose contact lens solutions.