Am I A Good Candidate For Scleral Lenses?

Contact lenses are a comfortable, easy way to live a glasses-free life. But not everyone is able to enjoy the ease of contacts, soft or gas permeable. Due to conditions that make contacts uncomfortable and, in some cases, impossible to wear, some men and women had to give up their dream of living life without glasses. Until now.

Scleral lenses are opening up a whole new world for those who previously couldn’t wear contacts. These special gas permeable (GP) contact lenses are larger than conventional GP lenses, but like regular GP, scleral lenses offer the durability, sharper vision, and lowered risk of infection when compared with soft contacts.

Patients who have problems with the fit of the conventional GP contacts or soft contact lenses find they are able to wear scleral lenses with few or no problems.

How scleral lenses differ from traditional lenses

You wear conventional contacts to correct your vision, and they fit directly over your cornea. Many patients can comfortably wear both the soft contact lenses and conventional GP contacts. But if you have chronic dry eyes or certain medical conditions, neither of those options works.

Scleral lenses don’t rest on the surface of the cornea, as traditional lenses do, but on the white part of the eye, known as the sclera. This means these specialized contact lenses are far larger in diameter than conventional lenses. The bigger size means a better fit, more stability, and less irritation for those who are extremely sensitive.

Scleral lenses for keratoconus

Keratoconus is a condition of the eye that affects approximately 1 out of every 2,000 Americans. This progressive eye disease involves a thinning and bulging of the cornea. In addition to other issues, keratoconus can make it impossible to fully correct your vision with glasses or contacts due to the changing and unusual cone shape of the cornea.

With the more stable scleral lenses, those with keratoconus find they’re better able to tolerate contact lenses, and the rigidity of the gas permeable lenses prevents corneal irritation. Not only that, but the area between the surface of the cornea and the lens is filled with lubricating tears, which provide additional comfort and a smoother surface for the contact to correct vision.

For those who suffer from keratoconus, this is very good news indeed. Comfort and vision correction is a win-win.

Additional candidates for scleral lenses

At West Vision, optometrist Dr. Jacob West also recommends scleral lenses to help those who have:

Corneal irregularities

In addition to those suffering from the eye disease keratoconus, people who have corneal irregularities due to eye surgery also benefit from scleral lenses. While previous attempts to correct vision were likely never fully successful, patients find their vision much improved and sharper with scleral lenses.

Dry eyes

When you suffer from dry eyes, it’s impossible for you to comfortably wear contact lenses. No matter how often you use lubricating drops, the discomfort always seems to be there. With scleral lenses, your corneas are lubricated continually by the built-in tear reservoir of the scleral lens. The front of your eye stays lubricated and discomfort is minimized.

Hard-to-fit eyes

Some people have a difficult time comfortably wearing contact lenses because of the shape of their eyes. One or both eyes may be off in shape just enough that the lens dislodges or easily pops out. Because scleral lenses offer greater stability, they provide a much better fit.

Vision care for everyone

At West Vision in Tyler, Texas, we help patients find comfortable ways to correct their vision, no matter the issue. Dr. West specializes in all aspects of vision care, with a particular focus on those who’ve had trouble comfortably wearing contact lenses. There are three types of scleral lenses, and Dr. West determines the right one for you.

If you’ve had trouble wearing contacts, but long to live a glasses-free life, contact West Vision today. Dr. West and his team strive to provide a sharper, more comfortable view of the world for you.

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