Categories Contact Lens
Contact Lenses vs. Glasses

Contact Lenses vs. Glasses: Choosing the Right Fit for Your Lifestyle

Contact Lenses vs. Glasses

Good vision is a gift that many of us take for granted. However according to the National Eye Institute, roughly 2.4 billion people around the world experience vision impairment. Fortunately, corrective lenses can significantly improve our ability to see the world.

Deciding between contact lenses and eyeglasses is a personal choice that depends on your lifestyle and preferences. Both options offer excellent vision correction, but each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. This blog post will explore the world of contacts and glasses, helping you determine which option best suits your needs.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Contact Lenses

Contact lenses have become a popular choice for vision correction, offering a range of benefits that traditional eyeglasses can’t match. Let’s explore the reasons why many people choose contacts, along with some of the potential drawbacks to consider.

1. Wider Field of View

Unlike glasses with frames that can obstruct your peripheral vision, contact lenses sit directly on your eye, providing an unobstructed and wider field of view. This can be a game-changer for activities like driving, playing sports, or anything where a clear and unrestricted view is crucial.

2. Active Lifestyle Compatibility

Contact lenses are ideal companions for an active lifestyle. They won’t fog up during exercise, slip down your nose during a run, or get knocked off your face during a pick-up game. This freedom of movement allows you to participate in physical activities without worrying about your vision correction.

However, contact lenses aren’t without their drawbacks.

 

1. Care and Hygiene

proper care of contact lenses

Unlike throwing on a pair of glasses, contact lenses require a daily commitment to proper care and hygiene. Cleaning solutions, storage cases, and regular replacement schedules are all essential to maintain healthy eyes. Neglecting proper care can lead to infections and eye irritation.

2. Potential Discomfort

Inserting and removing contact lenses can be a challenge for some, especially when first starting out. Additionally, contact lenses can sometimes cause dry eyes or irritation, particularly in drier climates or for people with pre-existing eye conditions. 

Weighing the advantages and disadvantages of contact lenses will help you decide if they’re the right fit for your lifestyle and vision needs.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Eyeglasses

Eyeglasses, the classic choice for vision correction, offer a unique blend of practicality and style. Let’s look at some reasons why glasses remain a popular option, alongside some potential downsides to consider.

1. Low Maintenance

microfiber cloths

Eyeglasses are incredibly user-friendly. Unlike contact lenses, they require minimal maintenance. A quick cleaning with a microfiber cloth and a splash of water is all it takes to keep them clear. This makes them a great choice for busy individuals or those who might find the daily routine of cleaning contacts cumbersome.

2. Comfort for Dry Eyes

People with dry eyes often find eyeglasses more comfortable than contact lenses. Contacts can further dry out the eyes, while glasses act as a barrier, reducing wind and dust irritation. 

3. Fashion Forward

Eyeglasses have transcended their functional purpose to become a true fashion statement. With a wide variety of styles, shapes, and colors available, you can choose frames that complement your face shape and personal style. From sleek and modern to bold and vintage, there’s a pair of glasses out there to match every personality.

However, eyeglasses do come with some drawbacks.

1. Limited Peripheral Vision

The frames of eyeglasses can obstruct some of your peripheral vision, especially with thicker frames or certain styles. This can be a minor inconvenience during daily activities but might be more noticeable in situations requiring a wider field of view, like driving.

2. Active Lifestyle Considerations

While some sports and activities are perfectly manageable with glasses, they might not be the most ideal choice for all situations. Glasses can fog up during exercise, slip off your face during contact sports, or get damaged by sweat or impacts.

Ultimately, the decision between contact lenses and eyeglasses depends on your individual needs and preferences. Consider your lifestyle, comfort level, and how much time you’re willing to dedicate to maintenance. With its ease of use, eye health benefits, and endless style options, eyeglasses remain a compelling choice for many.

Choosing the Right Fit

eyeglasses fits

Now that you’ve explored the advantages and disadvantages of both contact lenses and eyeglasses, it’s time to discuss how to choose the right fit for you. Here are some key factors to consider:

1. Individual Preferences and Lifestyle

Do you prioritize a wider field of view and freedom of movement for an active lifestyle? Then contact lenses might be ideal. On the other hand, if you value low maintenance and comfort, especially for dry eyes, then eyeglasses might be a better fit. Consider your daily activities and how your vision correction will integrate with your lifestyle.

2. Severity and Type of Vision Correction Needed

For some vision problems, contact lenses might not be suitable. If you have complex prescriptions or astigmatism, a conversation with your eye doctor is crucial to determine if contacts can effectively address your needs.

3. Eye Health Considerations

Dry eyes or allergies can make contact lens wear uncomfortable or even impractical. If you have pre-existing eye conditions, discuss them with your doctor to see if contacts are a safe and healthy option for you.

The best way to choose between contact lenses and eyeglasses is to consult with an eye doctor. They can assess your individual needs, perform a comprehensive eye exam, and recommend the best vision correction solution for you. They can also guide you on proper contact lens care and hygiene practices if you choose that route. 

A visit to your eye doctor will ensure you get a personalized evaluation and fitting, allowing you to see the world clearly and comfortably, no matter which vision correction method you choose.

Conclusion

Choosing between contact lenses and eyeglasses is a personal decision. Both options offer excellent vision correction, but each has its strengths and weaknesses.

Contact lenses provide a wider field of view and unrestricted freedom for active lifestyles. However, they require daily care and hygiene routines and might not be suitable for everyone, especially those with dry eyes or allergies.

Eyeglasses are low-maintenance and comfortable, particularly for people with dry eyes. They also come in a wide variety of styles to suit any taste.  However, glasses can limit peripheral vision and might not be ideal for all sports and activities.

The best way to determine which option is right for you is to consult with an eye doctor.  They can assess your specific needs, perform a comprehensive eye exam, and recommend the most suitable vision correction solution.  They can also guide you on proper contact lens care if you choose that route.

Don’t wait! Schedule an appointment with your eye doctor today for a personalized evaluation and vision correction consultation. Take control of your vision health and see the world clearly and comfortably.

FAQs

Q: Can I wear contact lenses if I have dry eyes?

Not necessarily. Contact lenses can further dry out your eyes. Discuss this with your eye doctor; they might recommend specific types of contacts or suggest eyeglasses as a more comfortable option.

Q: I have an active lifestyle. Are contact lenses better for me?

Contact lenses can be a great choice for active individuals. They provide a wider field of view and won’t slip or fog up during exercise. However, if you participate in contact sports, discuss safety precautions with your doctor.

Q: I don't like the idea of putting things in my eyes. Are glasses my only option?

While some people find inserting and removing contacts challenging, it gets easier with practice. However, eyeglasses are a perfectly valid choice! They’re low maintenance and come in a variety of styles.

Q: Can I switch between contact lenses and eyeglasses?

Absolutely! Many people opt for this approach. You can wear contacts for specific activities and use glasses for everyday wear. Discuss this with your eye doctor to ensure you have the right prescriptions for both.

Q: How often should I get my eyes checked?

Comprehensive eye exams are crucial for maintaining good eye health. The recommended frequency can vary depending on your age and risk factors. Generally, adults should get their eyes checked every one to two years, while children might need them more frequently. Consult your eye doctor for personalized guidance.

Categories Contact Lens
Contact Lens Intolerance

Treatment Options for People with Contact Lens Intolerance

Contact Lens Intolerance

You might find contact lenses more convenient than glasses for temporary vision correction. However, wearing contact lenses can lead to a condition known as contact lens intolerance (CLI). CLI is a broad term describing the inability to wear contact lenses comfortably. Some individuals experience CLI symptoms occasionally, while others suffer from them daily, leading to an inability to wear contacts altogether. Symptoms of CLI can vary from mild to severe and may include dryness, redness, irritation, and inflammation.

This blog post aims to provide insight into contact lens intolerance and the available treatment options. But before that, let’s discuss the dos and don’ts of wearing contact lenses.

Dos and Don’ts of Wearing Contacts

To make the most of your contact lenses, there are a few guidelines to keep in mind. While they’re not strict rules, following them can greatly enhance your comfort while wearing lenses. Here are some dos and don’ts:

guidelines

Dos:

  • Hand Washing: Prioritize washing your hands with soap and running water before touching your eyes or lenses. This prevents transferring particles or germs, which could lead to irritation.
  • Take Breaks: Give your eyes a break by taking one day off per week from wearing contact lenses and using your glasses instead. Additionally, limit the number of hours per day you wear your lenses.
  • Regular Eye Exams: Schedule regular eye exams with your Toronto optometrists. Seek immediate attention if you experience any emergencies related to your contact lenses.
    Now, let’s discuss what you should avoid:

    Don’ts:

    • Swimming or Saunas: Avoid wearing contacts while swimming or in a sauna, as water can introduce harmful microorganisms to your eyes.

    • Changing Lens Care Products: Do not change your lens care products without consulting your eye doctor first. Different products may not be compatible with your lenses or eyes.

    • Extended Wear: Never wear your lenses longer than their intended use. This can lead to discomfort and potential eye health issues.

Treating Contact Lens Intolerance

For most patients, contact lens intolerance is a temporary issue. However, we prioritize your comfort and clarity of vision. If you experience frequent or severe discomfort, we recommend discussing this with one of our eye care professionals. In the meantime, here are some steps you can take to alleviate your discomfort:

1. Switch to Glasses: If your contact lenses are causing irritation, wearing your backup glasses can provide relief until your eyes settle down.

2. Consider Vision Correction Surgery: If other methods don’t provide long-term relief, refractive surgery may be an option. We offer consultations for various surgical options at 360 Eyecare. ReLEx SMILE, for example, is a cutting-edge Laser Vision Correction method that minimizes the risk of corneal weakness or dry eye post-surgery.


3. Use Lubricating Eye Drops: Dryness is a common cause of contact lens intolerance. Try using over-the-counter artificial tears or lubricating eye drops specifically for contact lenses to alleviate symptoms.

4. Evaluate Your Lens Care Routine: The products you use to care for your lenses can contribute to intolerance. Ensure you’re using solutions without preservatives, as these can cause hypersensitivity. If you’ve recently switched solutions and started experiencing issues, that could be the cause.

Lens Care Routine

5. Review Your Lens Wear Habits: Sleeping in your lenses, wearing them for too long, or not cleaning them properly can lead to intolerance. Always follow your doctor’s instructions for lens wear and care.

We aim to make your vision journey as comfortable and effective as possible. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.

How we can help at 360 Eyecare

Many people who wear contact lenses simply resign themselves to the inconveniences they bring. But there’s good news: relief is within reach! Picture waking up and beginning your day without the irritation and challenges that come with wearing contacts.

If that idea resonates with you, give us a call at  416-698-3937 and  416-901-2725 or click to arrange a consultation with 360 Eyecaree in Beaches or Rosedale in Toronto. Discover if vision correction surgery could be the solution you’ve been seeking.

Visit us, and our friendly, knowledgeable eye doctors  will greet you with a warm smile.

Conclusion

In conclusion, contact lens intolerance is a common condition that affects many individuals who wear contact lenses. However, it should not be ignored, as it can cause significant discomfort and even lead to vision problems. By following the dos and don’ts of wearing contacts and seeking professional help when necessary, you can alleviate your symptoms and enjoy clear vision. At 360 Eyecare, we are committed to helping you achieve optimal eye health and vision. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you.

FAQs

Q: Can I continue wearing contact lenses if I have contact lens intolerance?

It is advisable to consult with an eye care professional to determine the best course of action. In some cases, it may be possible to continue wearing lenses with proper management and care.

Q: Are there any long-term effects of contact lens intolerance?

Prolonged use of contact lenses despite intolerance can lead to complications such as corneal ulcers, infections, and corneal neovascularization. It is important to address intolerance promptly to avoid these risks.

Q: How can I prevent contact lens intolerance?

To prevent contact lens intolerance, it is essential to follow proper lens care instructions, avoid wearing lenses for extended periods, and schedule regular eye exams to monitor eye health.

Q: When should I see an eye care professional about contact lens intolerance?

If you experience persistent discomfort or symptoms of intolerance, it is recommended to see an eye care professional for an evaluation. They can determine the underlying cause and recommend appropriate treatment options.

Categories Optometrist

Here is why your glasses prescription is often different than your Contact lens prescription

Many people know they need a prescription from an optometrist to purchase eyeglasses. However, few understand why their eyeglasses prescription is different from their contact lens prescriptions.  Many incorrectly assume there is one universal prescription that fits all.  While different brands of eyeglasses lenses can use the same prescription, contact lens prescriptions are different as every lens fits differently on the eye.  Each soft contact lens comes with two other parameters, the base curve and the lens diameter.  The base curve dictates how flat or steep the lens sits on the eye.  Our corneas are different. Some patients might have flat corneas, others might have steeper ones.  Depending on your corneal curvature, the lens with the right base curve for you is chosen.  Furthermore, to a smaller degree of variability lenses will have different diameters as dictated by the manufacture of each brand.

Can contact lenses correct for astigmatism?

Yes, contact lenses can correct for astigmatism. However that’s another reason why contact lens prescription and glasses prescription are often different.  Pre-made soft contact lenses are usually available in half diopter intervals and only start at 0.75.  With base eyeglasses prescriptions that don’t fit around those restrictions, your optometrist would have to determine what’s best to convert it to.  Your eye doctor might often need to trial on your eyes lenses with different parameters to determine a final contact lens prescription.

Can I use one contact lens prescriptions for different brands?

Unlike eyeglasses, different contact lenses could potentially have different prescriptions for the same person at one point in time. Part of the reason is that different lenses will have different curvatures, sizes and material.  The level of how steep or flat a lens is can affect the power of the lens and therefore different contact lenses could have different prescriptions if they are different.

Furthermore, often times soft lenses aren’t suitable for certain eyes and therefore your optometrist will need to fit you with custom rigid gas permeable lenses (RGP) or scleral lenses to correct vision.  These are highly customizable lenses created for each individual patient according to their precise eye shape and parameters.  For those custom contact lenses the prescription will be significantly different that your spectacle’s prescription.

Can contact lenses affect the health of my eyes?

When being fitted for contact lenses it’s imperative to assess the health of the eye to ensure that it is safe for the patient to wear contact lenses in general and if they are candidates for a specific lens.  For example patients with mild dry eyes might be more suitable for certain contact lenses than others. Other conditions such as keratitis precludes patients from wearing any contact lenses altogether until the condition is managed and resolved.  Contact lenses with reduced oxygen permeability and water content can also exacerbate certain conditions.  For the safety of your eyes, it is important to speak to your optometrist for consultations on contact lenses for what’s best for your eyes before attempting to wear any lenses.

Categories Eye Exam

Eye Exam and a Contact Lens Exam

Eye Exam vs Contact Lens Exam

The comprehensive eye exam is a critical part of maximizing your eye health. Our eye doctors in Toronto provide these along with other vision care services, including contact lens exams. While similar in some respects, these two exams are different, and you very well may need both.

What’s the Difference Between an Eye Exam and a Contact Lens Exam?

During a routine comprehensive eye exam, one of our optometrists will assess the physical and functional aspects of your eyes. He or she will perform tests and measures to check your vision (visual acuity), assess how well your eyes work together, check your inner eye pressure, and screen for early warning signs of eye health disease. If necessary, he or she will also determine the strength of vision correction prescription you may need.

If you choose to wear contact lenses, you’ll need to schedule a contact lens exam in addition to your normally scheduled eye exam. Contact lenses are medical devices that require a prescription from your doctor. It’s extremely important to make sure that your eyes are healthy enough to continue wear of contact lenses. The doctor will decide if the contact lens prescription is accurate for you, as an improper prescription may damage your eyes.

During a contact lens exam, our optometrist will measure the surface of your eye in order to determine the size and type of contacts you need. He or she may also test the quality and amount of tears you have, and ask about any eye health conditions (like allergies) to ensure you can comfortably wear contacts. Once a correct type, fit, and prescription of contact lens has been made, your optometrist will likely request a follow-up visit in about a week to ensure that the contacts are working well for you.

The bottom line is that everyone should get a comprehensive eye exam on an annual or bi-annual basis. For those of us who choose to wear contact lenses, we also need to schedule a contact lens exam, too!

Are Your Vision Needs Met in Toronto? Call 360 Eyecare Today.

Are you looking for comprehensive solutions for your vision and eye health needs? If so, call 360 Eyecare today to connect with our experienced team of optometrists, serving all of Toronto.