Contact lenses are an alternate option to Spectacles but cannot be a substitute to replace glasses. They can be a good option to take breaks from Spectacles and split the wearing time between the two. Contact lenses can also be worn for sports, leisure or as fashion accessories for cosmetic purposes having no prescription. Generally, contact lenses are suitable for most patients.
The whole process starts from having a Contact Lens Fit, followed by a lens performance assessment and finally, a corneal check. Next step is to find the right product to suit the patient’s lifestyle, requirement & budget.
There are different types of Contact lenses available on the market to cater for the needs & wants of the wearers; they can be broadly classified into 4 categories:
Daily Replacement Lenses:
As the name suggest these lenses are for one time wear or a single day use only. Due to its nature of being used only one time, they are the healthiest option available on the market. These are incredibly low maintenance, easy to use without having to worry about cleaning and less prone to eye infections, if guidelines are followed. These are individually packed lenses having a long expiry that allows the wearer to break the wearing time. Drawback to daily lens is increased overall cost of purchase. These lenses are highly recommended for people having a busy lifestyle.
Fortnightly Replacement Lenses:
Fortnightly lenses are a good balance between daily & monthly disposable lenses, and a more economical choice for regular wearers. One lens is worn over a period of two weeks as a result they need to be cleaned every night to avoid drying of lenses and other causes of infection. They allow longer wearing time due to it’s quality base material and are comfortable to wear for the whole day.
Monthly Replacement Lenses:
A monthly disposable lens is designed to be worn for the whole month, means a single lens is re-used for the entire month, and requires more care & attention. They need to be cleaned religiously and soaked in the solution overnight on daily basis. Monthlies are a good choice for regular wearers of contacts looking to economize on their purchase and are willing to adhere to the strict cleaning regime.
Gas Permeable Lenses:
Rigid gas permeable lenses are generally yearly replacement lenses. Because a single lens is used for the whole year; it is made of durable plastic that transmits more oxygen thus prolonging the life of the lens. Therefore it is less likely to break but is not as comfortable as soft contact lenses. Also, they need rigorous cleaning, rubbing, disinfecting with a special solution to avoid deposits of protein and calcium. Normally, these are cheaper to buy considering the wearing life of lenses but overall cost may not necessarily be cheaper than a monthly replacement lens.
DIFFERENT CATEGORIES OF CONTACTS:
Single Vision Lenses:
A single vision contact lens is surfaced with one prescription over the whole lens to correct the spherical prescription for one focal length only. (Either distance or reading)
Toric Lenses for Astigmatism:
Toric contact lenses are specially made to correct the astigmatism in the eye. These lenses are a more complex design therefore they are more expensive to buy than normal spherical contact lens.
Toric lenses have a design feature that enables the lens to rotate to the proper orientation on the cornea enabling the power meridians of the lens to align with the appropriate meridians of the eye for clear vision. (www.allaboutvision.com)
Multi-focal contact lenses are designed to provide clear vision at all distances for people who have refractive errors and also experiencing the normal age-related decline in near vision called ‘Presbyopia’.
These multi-focal contact lenses have specific regions of the lens designated for far and near (and sometimes intermediate) viewing. Depending on the object being viewed, the wearer's eye uses the region(s) of the lens that provide the sharpest vision. (See Picture)
Colored Contact Lenses:
There are plenty of reasons to consider colored contact lenses. Specifically for those individuals who have dreamed of having a different eye colour. Colored contact lenses offer a fast and effective way to transform your appearance. It is a perfect way to reinvent your personal style. (www.contactlenses.co.uk)
Made to Order Special Lenses:
Custom fit contact lenses may be ideal for you if you can't wear regular contact lenses because of problems such as an irregularly shaped eye or too much astigmatism. A number of contact lens manufacturers offer special design soft contacts for hard-to-fit eyes. These designs feature smaller and larger diameters and a wider range of curvatures and powers than conventional soft lenses for a more customized fit. (www.allaboutvision.com)
MARKET LEADING BRANDS:
We source most of our contact lenses from reputable global brands such as:
- Acuvue (Johnson & Johnson Vision Care)
- Bausch & Lomb
- Cooper Vision