A Closer Look at Astigmatism and Contact Lenses
A lot of people with astigmatism think they can’t use contact lenses due to their condition. It may come as a surprise to know that there’s actually a unique kind of contact lens that corrects astigmatism. A regular cornea is round, but in the case of someone with astigmatism, it’s more elliptical. This seemingly minor detail actually alters how light enters the eye, and as a result, vision is unclear.
The lenses prescribed to correct astigmatism are known as toric contact lenses. Toric lenses are constructed differently from regular lenses. Regular lenses have one power, but toric lenses have two: one for myopia or hyperopia and one for astigmatism. Compared with regular lenses, which can freely move around on your eye and have no effect on your vision, toric lenses must stay in place. However, toric lenses are smartly designed with this issue in mind, and they are weighted slightly at the bottom, which prevents them from moving around.
Toric lenses are available as soft disposable contact lenses, daily disposable lenses, and frequent replacement lenses. Toric lenses are also available as color contact lenses, and as multifocal lenses. Rigid gas permeable lenses (RGP, or hard contact lenses) are made from a harder material that remains in shape even when you blink, and might provide even sharper vision than other lenses. But they are usually less comfortable. There’s a contact lens which is just right for you.
Due to the fact that toric lenses are just a bit more complex, expect the fitting to take a little more time. Nevertheless, with constant growth in the field of optometry, those with astigmatism have lots of life-improving options to choose from.