Contact lens designs have undergone a remarkable transformation over the years. In the old days, they would easily dislodge from the eye, but today, they come in various designs that fit snugly all day. At Chapel Hill Ophthalmology Clinic, we provide insights to help you better understand the world of contact lenses. In this article, we'll explore the different types of contact lenses available today to help you make informed choices for clear, comfortable vision.
Types of Contact Lenses
Modern-day contact lenses fall within several categories, each designed to cater to specific needs and preferences. To find your perfect match, consider:
The material of your chosen contact lenses directly influences your comfort. Some of the options available include:
Soft Contact Lenses
Soft contact lenses are thin and typically crafted from pliable, plastic materials to ensure they gently conform to your corneal curvature. They're also flexible and great for various activities, from work to sports. However, they can tear easily and tend to absorb pollutants, which can irritate your eyes.
Gas Permeable Contact Lenses
Gas permeable lenses, commonly known as GP lenses, are designed from silicone polymers. They offer exceptional visual clarity and allow oxygen to pass through the cornea, promoting eye health. But while they're great, they may take some time to adjust to.
PMMA lenses have been in the game for quite a while. They were among the earliest contact lenses on the market. They're crafted from polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), a rigid plastic material that, although durable, limits oxygen circulation to the eye, making them difficult to adjust. Their popularity has since dwindled, with GP lenses emerging as the preferred option.
The Wearing Time
Contacts, whether prescription contact lenses or cosmetic, are also categorized based on the wearing time. Options include:
- Daily-wear contacts: Designed to be worn during the day and removed at night, daily-wear contact lenses are an excellent choice for individuals seeking convenience and a routine similar to prescription eyeglasses.
- Extended wear: These are designed to be worn continuously, including during sleep. Although this allows great flexibility, following your optometrist's instructions is crucial to ensure eye health and comfort.
Contact lenses are also categorized based on their replacement schedule. Your options include:
- Daily disposable contacts: As the name implies, these are discarded after a single use, eliminating the need for cleaning and storage.
- Disposable lenses: These are replaced at specific intervals, usually every two weeks or monthly, depending on your preference.
- Reusable lenses: Can be worn for up to six months before replacement.
Some lenses come with special features such as:
- Toric lenses: These contacts are specifically designed to correct astigmatism, a common refractive error, and are typically customized to fit the unique curvature of the eye.
- Multifocal contacts: Particularly designed to correct presbyopia, providing clear vision for both near and distant objects.
- Cosmetic lenses: Also known as colored contact lenses, cosmetic lenses come in different colors, allowing a touch of style by altering the wearer's eye color.
Learn More about Your Vision Choices in Chapel Hill, NC
Contact lenses come in numerous varieties. As you explore your options, it's important to consider your unique needs and preferences. At Chapel Hill Ophthalmology Clinic, we're here to guide you in finding the perfect fit. From material and wearing time to special features, each category offers choices that align with your lifestyle. We also offer contact lens fittings to help you discover the joy of clear, comfortable vision. To explore your options further, get in touch with us today.