Contact Lenses

Types of Contact Lenses:

Soft Contact Lenses

Soft contact lenses are made of soft, flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the cornea. Soft contact lenses may be easier to adjust to and are more comfortable than rigid gas permeable lenses. Newer soft lens materials include silicone-hydrogels to provide more oxygen to your eye while you wear your lenses.



Continuous Wear Contact Lenses

Continuous wear contact lenses are available for overnight or continuous wear ranging from one to six nights or up to 30 days. Continuous wear contact lenses are usually soft contact lenses. They are made of flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the cornea. There are also very few rigid gas permeable lenses that are designed and approved for overnight wear. Length of continuous wear depends on lens type and your eye care professional's evaluation of your tolerance for overnight wear. It is important for your eyes to have a rest without lenses for at least one night following each scheduled removal.

Rigid Gas Permeable (RGP) Contact Lenses

Rigid gas permeable contact lenses (RGPs) are more durable and resistant to deposit buildup. They tend to be less expensive over the life of the lens since they last longer than soft contact lenses. They are easier to handle and less likely to tear. However, they are not as comfortable initially as soft contacts and it may take a few weeks to get used to wearing RGPs, compared to several days for soft contacts.

Disposable (Replacement Schedule) Contact Lenses

The majority of soft contact lens wearers are prescribed some type of frequent replacement schedule. "Disposable," as defined by the FDA, means used once and discarded. With a true daily wear disposable schedule, a brand new pair of lenses is used each day. Some soft contact lenses are referred to as "disposable" by contact lens sellers, but actually, they are for frequent/planned replacement. With extended wear lenses, the lenses may be worn continuously for the prescribed wearing period (for example, 7 days to 30 days) and then thrown away. When you remove your lenses, make sure to clean and disinfect them properly before reinserting.

Color Contact Lenses

Color contact lenses can change the appearance/color of the eye. They can be plano, which do not correct vision, or they can have prescription added. Even if they do not correct vision, they are regulated by the FDA, just like corrective contact lenses.