Guide to Contact Lenses
There can be many areas of motivation when you are deciding to switch from spectacles to contact lenses:
- Cosmetic appeal
- No adjustment issues unlike spectacles (fogging up of lenses, constant slipping, weight issues)
- Contact lenses allow for a wider field of view
- Contact lenses allows for natural viewing
Whilst contact lenses is a good alternative to glasses, it is ultimately a medical device on the eye and requires tremendous maintenance.
Modality refers to the replacement schedule of the contact lenses. There are 3 types of modality:
- Dailies – To discard everyday
- Bi-weekly – To discard every 2 weeks
- Monthly – To discard every month
Daily contact lenses are the healthiest option where you get a fresh new pair of lenses everyday, however it is more price costly compared to the other two.
Bi-weekly and monthly lenses require additional contact lens solution to clean for the lenses, but are more cost savvy compared to dailies.
There are basically two types of material : Hydrogel & Silicone Hydrogel.
The recommended wearing hours for Hydrogel is maximum 8-10hours while Silicone Hydrogel can be worn for a maximum of 12 hours as it allows for more oxygen permeability.
However, silicone hydrogel material is known to be slightly rigid compared to hydrogels.
General Dos & Donts
- Always wash your hands before touching your contact lenses.
- Always discard your lenses according to the replacement schedule of the lenses.
- Contact lens casings have to be washed and air dried daily, discard after 3 months maximum.
- Keep your nails short to prevent tearing/scratching the lenses, to prevent hurting your eyes as well.
- Rub your lenses (bi-weekly & monthly) before and after wearing your lenses.
- For the ladies, always put on your contact lenses before doing your make up and before removing your make up to prevent contamination.
- Do not sleep, swim & shower with your contact lenses.
- Do not wash contact lenses with tap water.
- Do not place your contact lens case & solution in the washroom.
- Do not reuse solution, change fresh solutions everyday.
- Do not wear your contact lenses when you are sick (prevent spread of bacteria).
- Cease lens wear immediately if you feel discomfort and pain upon lens wear.
For first time contact lens wearer, it is advisable to learn the proper way of wearing contact lenses through your optometrist.