Contact Lenses

Advantages
Contact lenses are optical devices made to fit over the cornea of your eye to change its refractive characteristics and improve vision. Wearing them is a highly individual experience, and you may love them, or you may not be able to wear them, no matter how hard you try.
Bifocal
Bifocal contacts have been available since the days of the first hard contact lenses. However, early bifocal contacts weren't tolerated very well by most patients.
Colored contact concerns
No matter what your natural eye color is, you can now vary it to suit your own style, mood, and occasion. Most contact lenses are available in tints, and some come in a variety of colors to enhance or to change your eye color.
Contact lens concerns
In general, today's contacts are much more comfortable than those of the past, but not everyone can-- or should-- wear them, for a variety of reasons.
Disposable
Disposable soft contact lenses are designed to be worn for a short period of time and then thrown away. They've been around since 1987 and are made in such a way that they're produced and sold so inexpensively they can be discarded.
Gas permeable
Early contact lenses were hard lenses made of a material that had no ability to transmit oxygen or carbon dioxide, which made it unhealthy for the cornea of the wearer over the long term.
Hard vs. soft
Contact lens technology has come a long way since the days when old-style hard lenses were your only option. Today you can choose from a variety of different types of contacts, each with advantages and disadvantages, depending on the type of correction your eyes need, as well as your lifestyle requirements.
How long can you wear contacts?
The length of time you can wear your contact lenses depends on several variables. The primary factor is how long the lens is designed to be worn. It may be a daily-wear lens, which means you insert it in the morning and remove it before sleeping, or it may be what's known as an "extended-wear" lens, which means it's designed to be worn overnight for one to seven days.
How long should contacts last?
How long your contact lenses last depends on a number of variables. The first variable is the type of lens you're wearing, and how long it's designed to last.
How to obtain contact lenses
Contact lenses require a prescription and can be obtained either from an ophthalmologist (off-thul- MAHL-uh-jist), who is a medical doctor, or an optometrist (op-TOM-uh-trist), a doctor of optometry.
Inserting contacts
If you've never worn contacts before, you may have an understandable fear of deliberately putting something in your eye. Inserting your lenses may take some practice at first, but it can usually become quite easy and routine once you've mastered the technique.
Lens care
Caring for contact lenses involves two basic steps, regardless of the type of lens: cleaning and disinfection. Cleaning involves removing dirt, pollen, oils, makeup, and other substances from the surface of the lens.
Recent lens developments
Contacts have been around since the 1950s, and they've come a long way since then, in the materials used, in their comfort, and in the kinds of visual conditions they can correct.


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