If you’ve tried wearing contact lenses in the past but found that they were uncomfortable or unsuitable, you may be a candidate for specialty contact lenses. Some people can be more challenging to fit for contact lenses due to certain conditions, but there are a wide range of contact lens options to accommodate people who are “hard to fit” for regular contact lenses which offer comfortable, clear vision.
At Walter Eye Clinic, our doctors have the expertise to recommend and fit people for whom regular contact lenses aren’t comfortable or suitable with specialty contact lenses which accommodate their visual needs and provide them with the freedom and convenience wearing contact lenses can offer.
What Are Specialty Contact Lenses?
Specialty contact lenses are specifically designed for people who cannot wear regular contact lenses due to unique visual needs or eye health conditions. The doctors at Walter Eye Clinic will recommend the type of specialty lens based on your individual needs so that you can experience clear, comfortable vision.
Rigid Gas Permeable Lenses
Rigid gas permeable lenses, also known as RGP lenses, are harder and more durable than soft contact lenses and provide sharper vision correction. These lenses also allow a high quantity of oxygen to reach the corneas, which can help to keep them healthy.
RGP lenses are a nice option for people who with high astigmatism and for people who are very active in sports, as the edges of these lenses are fitted close to the eye to keep them securely in place.
Scleral lenses are a large-diameter rigid gas permeable lens which vault over the entire corneal surface and rest on the sclera, a less sensitive part of the eye. Scleral lenses provide sharp vision, are highly durable, easy to handle, and pose less risk for complications compared to regular soft contact lenses.
If you have dry eye, you may find you can’t comfortably wear soft contact lenses, but scleral lenses may be a good fit for you because there’s space between the lenses and the surface of your eyes which allows for a tear reservoir to keep your eyes moist.
If you suffer from a condition called keratoconus, your cornea is thinner than normal and bulges out into a cone shape, and this means regular contact lenses may not sit well on your eyes, but scleral lenses can accommodate the shape, sit well on your eyes, and provide you with sharp vision.
Cosmetic contact lenses are used to enhance or alter the color of the eye. People wear cosmetic lenses to simply change their eye color for cosmetic reasons, or for special occasions, like Halloween.
We prescribe cosmetic lenses which correct vision if you need it, and if you simply want to wear decorative contact lenses for fun but don’t need vision correction, we can prescribe them without any vision correction as well. As any contact lens is considered a medical device since it is placed on your eye, a prescription from a qualified eye care professional is needed for cosmetic lenses, whether you need vision correction or not.
Fitting for Specialty Contact Lenses
At Walter Eye Clinic, we can help you determine what contact lenses you need. At a contact lens exam, we will evaluate a range of metrics and eye health markers, including your cornea shape and size as well as corrective vision needs.
Once your eye doctor has gathered the information needed to gain a better understanding of your eyes, they will offer recommendations on specialty contact lenses that may be right for you. A specialty contact lens fitting will follow to ensure that your contacts rest correctly on your eyes and provide you with clear vision and a comfortable fit.
If you are interested in learning if specialty contact lenses may be right for you, contact our Tinley Park eye care center to schedule an appointment for your specialty contact lens consultation.