Eye lenses are specifically designed to compensate for the challenges that the eye presents to 20/20 vision. Approximately 3 out of every 4 Americans wear some type of corrective lens – whether eyeglasses or contact lenses. Though most achieve normal or near-normal vision, not all corrective lenses are the same.
Soft Contact Lenses – Soft contact lenses are the preferred choice for 4 out of 5 contact wearers, given that they are very comfortable to wear. Soft lenses are made mostly of water and are very soft.
Rigid Gas Permeable Contact Lenses – Also known as hard contacts, these lenses provide very crisp vision and last much longer than their soft lens counterparts.
Toric Lenses – These contact lenses are designed specifically for individuals with corneal astigmatism, or an elongation of the cornea. Toric lenses are specially shaped to avoid rotation in the eye, while delivering more power where it is needed and less where it is not.
Single Vision Lenses – These lenses are defined by an equal distribution of optical power throughout the lens. They may be used to treat nearsightedness, farsightedness or a combination of the two. Single vision lenses are most common for individuals under age 40, and they may be used in eyeglass or contact lens form.
Multifocal Lenses – These lenses are more common for lens wearers over age 40. They distribute power differently throughout the lens in order to compensate for both near and distant vision impairments. These lenses take time to adjust to, but when worn in contact form, they can eliminate the need for reading glasses in most cases.
Monovision Lenses – These lenses are used as an alternative to multifocal lenses. One eye (the dominant one) is fitted for distance vision correction and the other eye (the non-dominant one) is fitted for near vision correction. Monovision lenses typically only work in contact lens form and may take a couple of weeks to adjust to.