Updating Your Look? Two Things To Think About Before Ordering Specialty Lenses


These days, decorative contacts are all the rage. With celebrities like Lady Gaga wearing them in music videos to make their look more captivating, you might be tempted to change your eye color to something more exotic, or try those popular circle contact lenses that make your pupils look huge. To save time and money, you might even be tempted to order these lenses online instead of heading to the eye doctor. Unfortunately, wearing the wrong pair of contact lenses can cause discomfort or permanent damage. Here are two things to think about before ordering specialty contact lenses and how they might help you to avoid trouble:

1: Cleanliness, Testing, and Packaging Standards Aren't Regulated Everywhere

Many people assume that specialty contacts are similar to the prescribed variety. Although those lenses available online might seem like a legitimate replacement for the lenses you could get from your doctor, cleanliness, testing, and packaging standards aren't regulated everywhere.

For example, in the United States, contact lens manufacturers are required by law to test the viscosity, clarity, and hardness of contact storage solutions. They are also required to prove that the solutions used to store contacts are sterile and safe for consumers. In addition to these standards, US contact lens manufacturers are also required to prove that their lenses will stay sterile, even when stored for a long period of time.

Unfortunately, these rigorous standards aren't mandated in every country, which can put your eyes at risk. If your order those specialty contacts from a manufacturer who is cavalier about sanitation standards, you might end up colonizing your eyes with dangerous levels of bacteria, which can cause vision problems and even blindness. For example, bacterial keratitis, a serious eye infection that can cause blurred vision, eye pain, and even vision loss, is caused by the naturally occurring Staphylococcus aureus bacterium, which is commonly found on people's skin. If those specialty contacts you ordered are packaged in a factory that doesn't provide protective gear for its employees, this bacteria can end up in your contact pouch, where it can grow during storage. 

Although it might seem like a hassle to make an appointment with a professional optometrist, save your eyes and only order specialty contacts through your eye doctor. In addition to keeping you safe, ordering from your doctor might also mean that you can return lenses that don't give you the look you are after.

2: Fit Matters Too

Believe it or not, your doctor checks more than just eye health and vision power during the course of your eye exam. During your contact lens eye exam, your doctor will also carefully inspect the fit of your lenses. Unfortunately, if you order those specialty contacts through a third-party manufacturer, those lenses might not fit perfectly, especially if you have an eye condition that affects the shape of your eyeball, such as an astigmatism. Unfortunately, ill-fitting specialty contact lenses can cause these problems:   

  • Corneal Abrasions: If that contact lens doesn't fit just right, it can rub against your eye the wrong way and cause dangerous corneal abrasions, which can cause vision loss.
  • General Discomfort: Ill-fitting lenses can also be uncomfortable to wear, making your eyes watery, red, and generally unattractive.  

If you are interested in updating your look, meet with your eye doctor to order those specialty lenses. After they come in, your doctor will evaluate the fit and check for problems, which can help you to stay comfortable.

By understanding the risks associated with specialty contact lenses, you might be able to keep your eyes healthy and avoid permanent damage. For more information on eye care, check out the sites that are focused on registered optometrists. 


22 January 2016

Learning About Optometry Tools and Techniques

Hello, my name is Martin. Welcome to my site about optometry. I want to use this website to talk about all of the tools and techniques used to measure vision and eye health. Optometrists can accurately measure the patient's ability to see by simply performing a series of unique tests. The visions tests require the patient's participation to find the right prescription for corrective lenses. The rest of the exam is performed to check the health of the eye from the surface to the retina. I invite you to follow along and learn all you can about this interesting subject. Thanks for visiting.