Are you thinking about transitioning from eyeglasses to contact lenses? Contact lenses are a very popular choice for correcting eyesight. There are many different kinds of lenses to fit your needs. The first step is to call Athens Eye Care to schedule a contact lense examination. A regular eye exam with Dr. Kinard will include evaluation for contact lenses. Here is a little more information you should know about contact lenses.

The Benefits of Contact Lenses

There are many benefits for choosing contact lenses over eyeglasses. One benefit is that contact lenses are undetectable, and a great choice for people who do not like wearing glasses. Added convenience is another benefit, since contact lenses cannot be broken, lost and are inexpensive to replace. A distinct advantage in peripheral vision is another bonus. Sports players and those who work in occupations where glasses are a hazard, like construction or manufacturing, should also consider contact lenses as a safer choice. In recent decades, contact lens technology has advanced tremendously, so that almost everyone can wear them to correct vision problems, astigmatism and more.

Exam Process

The comprehensive eye exam at Athens Eye Care will include an examination for contact lenses. During the evaluation, the optometrist determines your eyes’ health and will be able to determine the right kind of contact lens for your individual needs.

Next, you will need to undergo a fitting for your new contact lenses. Then the doctor will go over instructions on how to care for your new lenses. The contact lens fitting process can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 1 hour. You will typically receive your new contact lens on the same day as your fitting or a day or two afterwards. During the next few weeks, you will wear the lenses on a trial basis. You may have a follow-up appointment with Dr. Kinard to see how well your eyes respond to the new lenses. If you experience any discomfort or have concerns or questions, you should tell Dr. Kinard at your follow-up appointment or by calling the office. If he needs to, he will make adjustments to your contact lens prescription and review any additional care necessary for your lenses.

The Different Kinds of Lenses

There are many different kinds of lenses. Here we explore the most common types. If you have specific needs, you should relate them to Dr. Kinard at your next appointment.

Common Types of Contact Lenses
  • Soft lenses you can sleep in
  • Hard, rigid lenses that are gas permeable
  • Bifocal contact lenses
  • Continuous-wear lenses
  • Colored lenses
  • Disposable lenses
  • Lenses to correct astigmatism

Hard Lenses

First there are hard lenses. These are also called rigid lenses and they come in two variations. The first is the conventional hard lenses, also known as polymethyl methacrylate or PMMA lenses. These are made from stiff plastic, which reduces distortion but can be uncomfortable to wear. The other kind of hard lenses are called rigid gas-permeable lenses. These are specifically designed to wear over night and for up to seven days at a time.

Soft Lenses

Within the soft lens category, there many variations, including:

Daily Wear – As can be assumed, daily wear lenses are worn during the day and removed at night, cleaned, and reinserted in the morning. With these kinds of lenses, you need replacements every year.
Extended Wear – Extended wear lenses can be worn day and night up to a week at a time. However, overextending the use of these lenses can cause irritation and increases your risk of eye damage.
Disposable Lenses – Disposable contacts come in both daily and extended wear, and they are worn for several weeks before being discarded.

What to Expect

After you get your contact lenses, you should expect a 2 to 4 week break-in period. This period is where your eyes become adjusted to wearing contacts. In this time you may experience a little discomfort. If you have a lot of discomfort or pain, you should contact the Athens Eye Care office immediately. Otherwise, the discomfort will improve and eventually go away over time. Soft lenses have a much shorter break-in period than hard lenses.

Caring for Your Contacts

Caring for your contacts is of the utmost importance. Neglecting to clean and care for them as directed by your doctor can actually cause damage to your eyes, including infections and permanent damage. One way to take responsible care of your contacts is to develop a routine cleansing, either every day or every week, depending on the type of contact. Make sure you follow your doctor’s instructions regarding cleaning and maintenance of your contacts. If you have any questions about your contacts, you can call our office.