By Erica Laceria on Feb 5, 2015 @ 09:30 AM
Whether you’ve decided that contact lenses are the best healthy vision option for you, or you’re ready to switch out of the traditional face frame lifestyle, there are a few things you should know before you make your first contact purchase. The process might be (and probably is) very simple, however, this small investment is going to change your everyday lifestyle. It’s important to understand how they work, pricing, routines involved and other specifics that may be the furthest thing from your mind. Allow us to shed some light.
What’s the process like?
Your first step should be to have your doctor conduct an eye exam. You’ll need specifics as to the intensity your contact lenses will have to be, their shape, whether you’ll go the standard two-week disposable route or choose another option. What’s most important is that your optometrist gives you the right prescription and recommends the best brand for your eye condition(s).
How much do contacts normally cost?
The truth is, it depends. There are many brands and types of contact lenses that, depending on what they’re specifically being used for, will vary in price. For example, “dailies” or daily-disposable contacts (usually used by patients with astigmatism), tend to be pricier than two-week disposable contact lenses. If you’re looking at brands, the prices vary as well. Some of the very highly rated brands, such as Oasys can be as much as $20 - $50 more expensive per box than a more averagely rated brand, such as Biomedics. If this is your first time trying contacts, go with the brand your optometrist recommends.
Another thing to keep in mind is where you purchase your contacts. While your optometrist’s office might try to sell you your lenses, be aware that there are websites where you may be able to purchase your lenses in a larger quantity for the same amount of money you’d pay at the office.
Will contacts be the right “fit” for you?
There are a variety of factors to consider besides the disposable time frames you want your contact lenses to have. In recent years, contacts have ventured into the cosmetology industry, making lenses that can intensify eye colors and pigments. If this is what you’re looking for, it would be wise to ask your optometrists to try on a few colors of contacts before choosing a color just because you like it. You’ll want one that flows with your facial features and overall desired look.
Is there a specific way I should care for my contacts?
Absolutely. You should always apply and remove your contacts with a clean set of hands. When you take them off, make sure your lenses case is clean and you have distributed the appropriate amount of solution to let your contacts soak and hydrate for the next time you use them. If you choose to go the daily-disposable route, you can skip the whole “care process” and just focus on washing your hands before and after applying your lenses.
Can I sleep with my contacts?
Most lenses are safe to sleep with, however, your doctor will recommend you don’t make it a habit. The truth is, contacts can dry your eyes, especially if you spend long hours in front of a computer or wear them all day long. Your eyes need a break, so allow them to recover – especially when you’re sleeping and don’t need to see anything.
These are just some of the factors you should be aware of before buying contacts. There is a ton of information on contact styles, brands and other specifics you can and should discuss with your optometrist. Make sure to take your time to ensure you make a choice on the contacts that will best suit you and your lifestyle needs. Also, think about investing in a vision insurance plan if you don't already have one - it'll help keep some extra cash in your pocket when you do decide to take the plunge!