Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Buying Contact Lenses with Spectacles' Prescription

@Sandra Michi

If you are thinking to switch glasses with contact lenses; the first thing you need to do is to meet your optometrist. Contact lenses cannot be purchased with the same prescription you might have been using for your glasses. There is some correlation between the two though. Contact lenses must fit your eyes and sit properly therefore the prescription of contact lens contains values for base curvature & diameter which the prescription for your spectacles lack.

Should I get an eye exam even if I need cosmetic contact lenses?

Yes. Cosmetic contact lenses too are labelled as medical devices. If you need them only for introducing a tint to your eyes; you might not need a typical eye exam but an eye doctor will test your eyes to check if they are fit for wearing contact lenses.

A doctor’s prescription for both prescription & plano contact lenses may contain contact lens specific terms such as BC, DIA, Limbal ring, water content etc. It also contains information on brand name & design. Sometimes optometrists suggest private label circle lenses that can be purchased from nowhere else but them. You can always request them to prescribe a national brand or you can yourself decide on the brand in case you have no medical complications.

I need prescription circle contacts. What next?

Short & crisp. Meet an eye doctor & get a fresh prescription.

Prescription for glasses is somewhat different than that of circle contacts. It may be stronger if contact lenses are conformed on the same values of your spectacles prescription because:

  1. Glasses sit on your nose at a distance of 12mm almost, whereas contact lenses directly float on your eyes.
  2. Glasses don’t cater to peripheral vision but contact lenses do.
  3. Getting a fresh prescription every time you decide a switch is of significant value because your prescription might have changed & you wouldn’t want to end up buying your contacts on a wrong prescription.

A prescription also contains an expiry date. It usually lasts a year. Therefore, you are always suggested to keep a strict contact lens follow up exam once every year. With a fresh prescription in hand ; you can now freely purchase your contact lenses either online or from your doctor that is unfortunately an expensive alternate.

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