Choosing contact lenses is always a challenge, but you may have some additional questions about choosing contact lenses for astigmatism. You may even wonder if contacts are the right choice for you. The good news is that you can wear contacts if you have an astigmatism. The right contacts will help correct your vision problems and ease strain on your eyes.
What is an astigmatism?
An astigmatism is a unique vision need caused by an unusual cornea or retina shape or curvature. While it necessitates specific visual needs, it is actually very common.
An astigmatism shifts where lights hit your retina which can cause blurry vision, eye strain, migraines, and more. Ideally, the best contact lenses for astigmatism will correct not only the way you see, but they will also reduce the physical discomforts that eye strain and blurry vision bring.
What are the best contact lenses for astigmatism options?
The good news is that there are contact lenses for astigmatism available. Even better, there are several different types. People who have an astigmatism have plenty of freedom to choose which contact lenses are best suited for their eyes.
The contact options for astigmatism have different pros and cons, so it’s a good idea to talk to your optometrist about which ones are best for you. The most popular choices for astigmatism contact lenses are, in order:
- Toric lenses
- Gas permeable lenses
- Hybrid lenses
- Specialty lenses
Toric lenses are usually soft contact lenses for astigmatism made of hydrogel. They correct an astigmatism by providing multiple different meridians for light to travel along. By directing light along these meridians, the lenses guide it to the proper point in your eye. Because your astigmatism is completely unique to you, you may have to try out several pairs of toric lenses before finding the right ones.
Gas permeable lenses, on the other hand, are usually hard lenses. Because hard lenses remain curved and don’t fit to a misshapen cornea, they act as a replacement, helping light refract properly through the eye.
Hybrid lenses are, as the name implies, a combination of toric and gas permeable lenses. These contacts combine soft and hard elements to provide the proper shape for your eye while using a soft lens to keep you comfortable. These contacts tend to shift less than other specialty contacts, making them ideal for active wear.
Specialty contact lenses really know no bounds. There are contacts that correct astigmatism while also treating various degrees of myopia or other conditions. Other specialty lenses may have features like extended overnight use, color, or comfort features. If your astigmatism is severe or highly unique, you can even get special scleral lenses.
What’s the bottom line?
Ultimately, choosing contacts should be done under medical advice. Astigmatisms are highly unique, and so are the contacts that treat them. If you are in search of contact lenses for astigmatism, start by scheduling an appointment with your optometrist or walk in to discuss your options.