Soft contact lenses are one of the most popular, convenient, and versatile corrective options. These medical devices allow millions of Americans to have clear vision without relying on glasses. Thanks to new designs and developments in the realm of contact lenses, soft contacts are an option for almost everybody.
Options for Soft Contact Lenses
Soft contact lenses come in many different sizes, brands, colors, and replacement options. Their versatility means you can find a lens and a replacement schedule that matches your lifestyle. Many people choose lenses with a monthly replacement schedule, which allows them to be worn for 30 days before being discarded. Other lenses with a slightly shorter lifespan offer a biweekly or 2-week replacement schedule. Both monthly and bi-weekly lenses are cost-effective options that require the wearer to regularly clean and store the lenses overnight.
Some monthly lenses advertise themselves as “extended-wear” lenses. These have FDA approval for overnight wear for up to six consecutive days, then must be removed and cleaned on the seventh day. While some lens designs make overnight wear an option, most optometrists agree that overnight wear of any contact lens, even those approved for extended wear, can increase the risk of complications or infections.
Instead of overnight lenses, many contact lens wearers and eye care professionals favor daily disposable contact lenses for a convenient corrective option. These lenses are worn for a single day and then discarded, with a new fresh pair being worn each and every day. Daily disposable lenses are the healthiest option for ocular health, especially for those people who may have a history of contact lens complications. They are also a great option for busy teens who are just starting to wear contact lenses, those affected by dry eye disease or ocular allergies, or those who struggle to maintain an appropriate cleaning and storage routine.
An Option for Almost Everyone
Contact lenses come in a wide variety of prescription options, making them an option for almost everyone. Spherical contact lenses are the most common option; these lenses are used to correct for nearsightedness and farsightedness. If you have an astigmatism, you may need toric contact lenses to help correct your vision. Improvements in toric lens designs allow them to deliver clear and consistent vision to people with mild to moderate amounts of astigmatism. For those affected by presbyopia who rely on reading glasses or bifocals, there are multifocal contact lenses that can help correct for both distance and near vision. It’s highly likely that there is a lens option for you, no matter what your visual demands are.
Other Contact Lens Options
Some people choose to add cosmetic properties to their contact lenses. Colored contact lenses can be used to enhance or change the natural color of the iris, and come in a wide range of prescriptions. Recently new UV-activated contact lenses have hit the market, which change from clear to tinted lenses when exposed to the sun. If you are interested in special modifications to your soft contact lenses, ask your doctor about the possibilities.