Patients use contact lenses for many different reasons. Some don’t like the look or weight of glasses on their face, others only wear them to play sports and finally some like the vision they experience with their contact lenses. Whether you are an occasional or frequent contact lens user, knowing what options are available can allow you a safer and more effective wear.
Soft contact lenses are disposable, and can be separated into dailies, bi-weeklies, and monthlies. Dailies are designed to be used once within a 14-16 hour wear period. Since they are one time use, no cleaning case or cleaning system is needed; reducing risk of infections and increasing overall comfort of wear. This option is great for occasional contact lens wearers who wear glasses most of the week and don’t want to deal with the hassle of cleaning/caring for contact lenses. Often these wearers will simply order a small supply of lenses to last them throughout the year, cost effective with ease of use.
Weekly or monthly contact lenses can be used for a more extended period of time, the same pair being recycled for reuse the following day until replacement is indicated. Once the pair is opened the 2-week or monthly lifespan begins. These lenses must be cleaned and disinfected every night (do not sleep in your contact lenses is Eyed LA’s golden rule) to reduce the risk of infection and to maximize the performance of the lens. They must be discarded after their lifespan to decrease risk to the eye (some risk are long term that may lead to decrease vision and in some cases blindness). Patients wanting to wear lenses daily and with better cost effectiveness will usually request these modalities. The cost of a year supply of these lenses will vary from company to company, however they are usually more cost effective when directly compare to a year supply of dailies.
Effective communication of the intended usage and how the contact lens feels will help the optometrist determine which contact lens brand and modality are best. Once chosen, the contact lens prescription will be good for a year. Annual contact lens fittings are required by law in all 50 states to ensure patients are wearing the most healthy, comfortable and clear contact lens on the market. Make sure to schedule your appointment and keep your eye care professional informed of your needs.
"See and Be Seen" @ Eyed LA Optometry in Brentwood, West Los Angeles