Find the Right Type of Contact Lenses
"Contact lenses have come a long way and offer some exciting options. You can bat a pair of baby blues one day, then flash golden tiger eyes the next. You can even toss disposable lenses in the trash each night. For people with vision problems, contacts remain an effective, almost invisible tool. The thin plastic lenses fit over your cornea -- the clear, front part of your eye -- to correct vision problems including nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. You can wear contacts even if you have presbyopia and need bifocals."
Soft Contact Lenses
"They’re made from a special type of plastic mixed with water. The water content lets oxygen pass through the lens to your cornea. That makes the lenses more comfortable, lessens dry eyes, and helps keep your cornea healthy. If it doesn't get enough oxygen, it can swell, get cloudy, and cause blurry vision or other, more serious problems."
Disposable Contact Lenses
"Are soft contacts that you wear only for a day and then throw away. That means you don’t have to clean them regularly or risk dry eyes and irritation from contact solutions. If you have allergies, they may be the best choice for you."
"Create an extremely breathable lens that lets plenty of oxygen pass through to your cornea. They also keep deposits from building up. That means less irritation from dry eyes. Some silicone contacts are FDA-approved for extended wear, so you can use them for up to 30 days. But many eye doctors say to remove any type of contact lens at bedtime. Why? Your cornea gets less oxygen when you sleep in contacts, so the risk of serious complications is higher. Silicone lenses aren’t for everyone, so talk with your eye care professional if you’re interested in them."
"As you age, the lens in your eye loses the ability to focus from far to near -- a condition called presbyopia. You’ll know you have it when it’s hard to read up close. If you have trouble with both near and far vision, bifocal lenses can help. They have both your distance prescription and near prescription in one lens. They come in soft and gas-permeable options."
Rigid Gas Permeable Lenses
"As the name suggests, these are stiffer than soft contacts. They’re made from silicone, and they're designed to let oxygen pass through to your cornea. You might see better than you do with soft lenses. They correct substantial astigmatism. They’re easy to take care of and durable."
Toric Contact Lenses
"If you have astigmatism and want to wear contacts, you'll need a toric lens. They’re made from the same material as other contacts but work with your eyeball, which isn’t completely round. They come in soft or rigid gas-permeable forms, extended-wear, daily disposable, and even in colored lenses. Like bifocal lenses in a pair of glasses, toric lenses have two powers in one lens: one that corrects your astigmatism, and another for nearsightedness or farsightedness."