What are Contact Lenses?
Contact lenses are optical medical devices that correct problems with your eyesight like difficulty focusing, nearsightedness and farsightedness. They are made from a special type of material called a polymer that has been cut into buttons and shaped to your prescription by a computer guided digital lathe.
Contact lenses rest on the outer surface of your eye (Cornea) floating on a thin film of tears that covers your eye. This film and the pressure of your eyelids hold contact lenses in place.
How do Contact Lenses work?
In order to see at all, light must be focused properly on the retina. The retina is a layer of nerve endings in the back of the eye. These nerve cells convert light into electrochemical impulses that are processed by your brain.
If the light is not focused properly, the result is blurred or imperfect vision.
Contact lenses refocus the light to help you see better.
- Material Types
- Soft contact lenses - flexible plastics that incorporate water. They allow oxygen to pass through to the cornea
- Hard Rigid Gas Permeable (RGP) Contact Lenses - durable and resistant to deposit buildup
- Hard PMMA contact lenses - Durable but hardly used any more as they are the least comfortable
- Wear Schedules
- Daily Wear - must remove nightly
- Extended Wear - can be worn for seven consecutive days without removal
- Replacement Schedules
- Daily disposable lenses - Discard after a single day of wear
- Disposable lenses - Discard every two weeks, or sooner
- Frequent replacement lenses - Discard monthly or quarterly
Make Up Tips
- Remove your contacts before removing your makeup
- Put your contacts in before putting on makeup
- Use water-based, hypoallergenic makeup
- Because mascara and eyeliner build up bacteria quickly, replace these products every three to four months.
- Avoid waterproof mascara it can be difficult to remove and can stain soft contacts.
What type of Vision Problem do you have?
- Difficulty focusing (Astigmatism)
- An additional curve on the surface of the cornea
- Toric contact lenses have two powers (curvatures at different angles)
- One power corrects the astigmatism.
- One corrects the Myopia
- Gradual loss of close-up vision (Presbyopia)
- Generally affects people older than 40
- Multi-focal lenses have two prescriptions on one lens
- Monovision lenses
- One eye is corrected for distance
- Other eye is corrected for near focus
- Your brain determines which eye works for what you are viewing
- Can take a little getting used to
- Nearsightedness (Myopia)
- From front to back, the eye is slightly longer than usual.
- Nearsightedness runs in families.
- Spherical contact lenses (typical, rounded design)
- Farsightedness (Hyperopia)
- From front to back, the eye is slightly shorter than usual.
- Farsightedness runs in families.
- Spherical convex lenses with a positive dioptric value, which causes the light to focus closer than its normal range
- Contact Crystal Clear Eyecare at (610) 857-2291 if itching, redness, or chronic blurry vision develops.
- When you are wearing contacts, avoid rubbing your eyes.
- Never wear torn or scratched contacts. This can cause serious corneal damage. Instead, use a back up pair of prescription eyeglasses.
- Do not moisten your contacts with saliva.
- When disinfecting the contact lenses, throw out the old solution in the case.
- Prevent the spread of diseases. Never let anyone else wear your contacts.
- If your contact lens solution looks discolored, throw it out as it could be contaminated.
Care and Cleaning
- Always wash your hands and dry them carefully before touching your contacts.
- To clean your contacts, use a sterile and approved contact lens solution and gently rub each contact.
- Dr. Sulak can recommend the best contact lens solution formulated for the type of lenses you wear.
- Store your contacts as directed.
- When wearing your contacts, use rewetting drops to lubricate your contacts and your eyes.