The Top 4 Reasons for Patients to Try Scleral Contact Lenses
There’s a lot of buzzing in the contact lens world around scleral contact lenses. In the past decade, this contact lens technology has really grown in understanding and popularity. Patients who were previously unable to wear contact lenses are now able to do so, specifically because of advancements in scleral lens technology. Here are the top 5 reasons for patients to try scleral contact lenses if they haven’t already:
1. “I wanted to try contact lenses in the past, but lenses were not available in my prescription.”
- Many patients with high prescriptions will seek out contact lenses, often in an attempt to avoid wearing thick spectacles that they may feel are uncomfortable or awkward in appearance. For some patients, mass produced lenses will not be manufactured in prescriptions powerful enough to fully correct them. Because scleral contact lenses are 100% customizable, nearly any type of prescription can be built into the lens and many patients who have been unable to have scleral lenses manufactured that are capable of fully correcting them.
2. “I tried lenses before, but every time I blinked or looked to the side my contact lens would move and my vision would become blurry. I stopped wearing contacts because my vision was so unstable.”
- Many patients with more complicated prescriptions that involve an astigmatism correction or a bifocal correction will be very happy with mass produced contact lenses, but some patients will experience transient blur with their lenses because the contact lens doesn’t fit the eye quite right. Mass produced lenses are often manufactured in a single set of fitting parameters and do NOT fit all eyes. Poor fitting lenses often move too much on the eye and this results in the lens optics moving enough to cause blur, even with normal blinking or eye movement. Scleral lenses are incredible stable on the eye and well fit lenses are capable of incorporating astigmatism or bifocal corrections with incredible accuracy and consistent clarity.
3. “My eyes are very dry, and every contact lens I wear seems to make this worse.”
- There are many patients that suffer from dry eye or ocular surface disease and desire to wear contact lenses. In the past, it has been understood that all soft and gas permeable contact lens designs were capable of aggravating dry eye disease and some patients who had severe enough signs or symptoms would have to discontinue contact lens wear. Scleral contact lenses are filled with a nurturing preservative free saline prior to insertion and are often prescribed specifically as a dry eye therapy.
4. “I have an eye disease or injury that makes my eye an unusual shape. I was told I need special contact lenses in order to see well.”
- There are patients who have had eye injuries or developed eye conditions that prevent good vision from being achieved with glasses or conventional contact lenses. Many of these patients are still capable of achieving excellent vision with appropriately fit scleral contact lenses. We routinely have patients who come in “blind” from keratoconus or corneal injuries that have 20/20 vision when they wear their scleral contact lenses. Any patient with a corneal disease or corneal injury that hasn’t tried scleral lenses yet may have their life changed by this technology
So there you have it! If you’ve considered contact lenses in the past and been discouraged because of your prescription or corneal condition, scleral lens technology may be something you benefit from dramatically. If this information has you interested you can schedule an appointment for a scleral lens consultation with Dr. Sherman at our South Broad Street and East Allegheny Avenue offices now!
Author: Justin Sherman, O.D.
Dr. Justin Sherman is a residency trained optometrist specializing in specialty contact lenses. He is experienced in prescribing scleral and gas-permeable contact lenses for the treatment of a variety of eye conditions, including severe dry eye and, corneal ectasia, and keratoconus. Learn more about Justin Sherman, O.D.