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Whether you’re about to be fitted with corrective lenses for the first time or you’ve been told you’re not a good candidate for contact lenses in the past, you may be curious about scleral contact lenses. These types of contacts have significant differences from both conventional hard lenses and soft lenses, and they can be a good alternative for patients in a range of different situations. Our Odessa optometrist answers some frequently asked questions about scleral contact lenses.
Scleral lenses get their name from the fact that they extend beyond the cornea to cover part of the white, or sclera, of the eye as well. This larger diameter provides increased comfort and makes them less likely to become dislodged. They are rigid but made from a gas permeable material that reduces the likelihood that they will harbor bacteria. They come in several diameters, and they are custom made to precisely fit the curvature of your eye.
Scleral contact lenses are a good option for many people, including patients who have had trouble wearing contacts in the past. Particularly if you have an irregularly-shaped cornea or if your eyes are considered hard-to-fit for some reason, you may want to try scleral lenses.
Patients with particularly dry eyes, who would also not have been considered good candidates for traditional contacts, may benefit from the increased surface area of the scleral lenses. The space behind the contact lens in these cases works to hold onto tears, leading to a higher concentration of them than you could naturally maintain and a more comfortable experience overall.
Scleral lenses can be used to treat just about any vision deficiency that other types of corrective lenses are used for. However, there are particular categories of patients who can benefit greatly from the use of scleral lenses in particular. These include patients with irregularly-shaped corneas, as well as anyone who’s had trouble wearing other types of contact lenses.
Patients with astigmatism often benefit from scleral lenses, since the way the lens vaults over the cornea without touching it eliminates some of the issues these patients have with conventional contact lenses. The same is true of patients with keratoconus once the disease has advanced beyond the stage that soft contacts or prescription eeyeglassescan adjust for.
Some other eye conditions that scleral lenses can be used to treat include myopia, pellucid marginal degeneration, neuropathic keratopathy, ocular cicatricial pemphigoid, familial dysautonomia, sports vision, presbyopia, and more.
Learn more about the advantages of scleral contact lenses and how they can help improve your vision. Call our Odessa optometrists today at 432-362-3133 to schedule an appointment for a contact lens exam.
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