I remember when I had to start wearing glasses, I was around 9 or 10. I hated them. I only really needed them to see the blackboard/whiteboard at the time but I was so self concious that 2 weeks on in parents evening when my parents mentioned my glasses the teacher had no idea what they were talking about! Thing is I was brought up with cartoons where the geeks wear glasses and get called "four eyes". I eventually wore them more often without caring as much but as I became a teenager I hated them.
Standing in the rain waiting for a bus was ridiculous as i had to keep wiping my glasses every 2 seconds, walking into a building when it was winter they would instantly steam up, not to mention when they broke I was screwed.
Some people suit glasses. I am not one of them. At all. Have you ever seen a film called the girl next door? Theres a geeky boy in it- kleedus I think hes called or something similar. Well that is what I looked like. Even my Dad told me I was ugly.
I was thrilled when I was 16 for my step mum to persuade my Dad to set up a direct debit for me to have contact lenses. My step mum said as soon as I got them I was a new person, I wouldnt look at the floor when I walked and I became more of a "leader" in my group of friends.
Things havent changed. Ive been with my boyfriend for 3 and a half years, he is yet to see me in glasses, I think I got put down so much when I got them they just make me feel completly ugly now.
That was a really long winded way to tell you how much my confidence changed. Ill get back to the review now!
I first got contact lenses 8 years ago so things may have changed a little now. I had a consultation where we discussed the best type of contact lense for me and covered putting them in and so on. I was given a free trial of them to see how I got on and then had to go back.
Putting them in for the first time was a bit of an issue for me. I had very long, sharp nails at the time and kept poking myself in the eye. Can i just stress its not normally as hard for most people! I just wasnt very good at things coming near my eye. I got there in the end but had to use a mirror for a few months!
After putting them in I had to go away for a little while then come back to see if they were still comfortable. As they were I started my trial.
BUT HOW DO I GET THEM IN MY EYE?
Starting out I had to use one hand to hold my eye open (top lid and bottom) and the other to place the lens in (whilst looking straight ahead). I had to use a mirror for this. Now i just need to pull my bottom lid down and stick them in no mirror needed so you do get used to it!
It does take a little practice, just like tying shoes or putting on mascara.
You can encounter a few problems with lenses especially when you first start wearing them. I had a couple occasions where upon taking them out Ive scratched my eye or my nail had caught my lense and theyve ripped in my eye. This isnt too serious you can usually get them out. A good tip if you're struggling is to get another contact lens (preferably if you're using dailies!) and stick it in your eye & then take it out. This helps make the contact stick.
TYPES OF DISPOSABLE
Daily disposable: This is the type of lens I tend to use now. As the name suggests they are just for one day. When you take them out you cannot store them away and put them back in later. Different brands have different suggested wear time. I tend to choose lenses that are more breathable, allowing wear for the majority of the day.
2 week disposable: These are contact lenses that you keep for... You guessed it 2 weeks. When you're done wearing them you clean them and put them in a pot of soloution. 2 weeks after opening them its time to get rid of them and move on to the next packet.
Monthly disposable: These are usually the cheaper option. Just like the 2 week disposables you clean them before and after use and leave them to soak in a cleaning soloution when not in use.
-Note: You can now get coloured lenses aswell. Ive seen dailies & monthlies of these. They come in a huge variety of colours from natural eye colours to strange effects (e.g. red/white/swirly).
WHICH CONTACT LENSES ARE FOR ME?
Anyone whos thinking of switching to contact lenses I strongly urge you to go to an optician. I now buy my lenses off the internet for ease and cheapness, it also means i can swap around what type I use when I want to (when my son was newborn I tried out continous wear lenses as I was up every couple of hours). I still do go for checkups and I only started doing this a couple of years ago.
Dailies for me are the most convinient. With long nails I have ripped the monthlies before and if thats my last pair I'm screwed! The downside to them is theyre a little expensive.
2 week disposable is probably more for someone who likes monthlies but thinks 4 weeks is a little long to use them.
Monthlies is the cheaper option usually but for me sometimes they were just too much effort! Especially after a night on the town.
Prices really do vary so shop around. Im currently going through a pack of DaySoft Dailies which cost 5.99 per pack of 32 lenses. These are very popular, it used to only cost 4.98 per pack.
Contactlenses.co.uk is where I go if I dont want to use Daysoft, theres tons on there.
If your starting out your local optician can advise you on the costs as they do vary from place to place.
I do apologise for my long review but this is a product I couldnt live without so I have a lot to say!
I have needed glasses for about 12 years now and have used contact lenses for the past 7 or 8 years on a daily basis.
I hate wearing glasses as I find them really annoying, especially if it is raining (wiping them every 2 minutes and making them all smeary) or if going inside after being outside in the cold (steaming up) or being on holiday (can't wear them in the pool, scratchy sand at the beach, sun glare,can't wear them with your sunglasses - unless you fork out for special glasses - etc). So, when it got to the point where I needed them constantly I decided to get contact lenses.
I used monthly lenses for a year or two and found them tricky to use at first but soon got used to putting them in and taking them out and found them a great deal more convenient than glasses. However, what I did find was that even when cleaning them as recommended and leaving them to soak in cleaning solution overnight etc they were getting a bit scratchy and uncomfortable by the end of the month before my new pair arrived. So, I then switched to daily lenses and have never looked back.
I get mine through Specsavers and they cost me £22 per month including delivery and a regular contact lense check up. If I'm going on holiday I usually buy an extra box so I have spares and this is especially useful as it then means I have spare pairs of going to the beach / the waterpark where I might need to take them out and put a new pair in afterwards. however, I have to say that once you are totally used to contact lenses you will probably find that you can go in the water with them in absolutely no problem.
I find them very convenient as I don't have to bother with cleaning solutions etc and if a pair splits or something I can just throw them away and stick a new pair in - another reason to always have a few spare pairs on standby. I always keep a spare pair in my handbag and at work just in case.
It is not usually recommended to keep them in your eyes for extended periods of time so I have a pair of glasses also just for wearing watching tv in the evening etc and just to have another option if, for instance, my hayfever is playing up and I don't fancy irritating my eyes further.
Contact lenses in general do take some getting used to but if you persevere you will really find them a great alternative to glasses and fairly inexpensive. I would certainly recommend daily rather than monthly ones as the cost is not much different and they are a much better option.
I will never forget the day I was told I would need to wear glasses, I was about 9 or 10 and thought it was the end of the world! From this day on I begged and pleaded with various opticians to give me contact lenses and they all said the same - "when you're 13". As a child that seemed like a lifetime away and the day of my 13th birthday off I went for my lenses and was the happiest teenager ever. I think these little things changed my whole teenage years for the better. Not only were glasses not a fashion statement then (even though it's not that long ago), but for my lifestyle they just mad my life much easier but I will go into that a bit later.
TYPES OF LENSES
The most common types of disposable lenses on the market are:
- Daily disposable
- 2 Week disposable
- Monthly disposable
COST OF LENSES
This all depends on which you get, I am quite lucky that I haven't had many problems with the health of my eyes and must have tried about 20 brands over the years without any issues.
The lenses I get at the moment cost £12 for 32 pairs of daily lenses. I probably only wear them one or two days a week so for £12 they would last me around 4 or 5 months.
The monthly lenses I buy cost me about the same for 6 pairs, each pair lasts a month and you can use them as often as little as you need.
There doesn't seem to be as much range with 2 week lenses as the others, but on average the price seems to be around £20 for 6 pairs.
WHICH IS FOR YOU?
Daily lenses - For those who don't wear contact lenses daily or do not want the hassle of lens care. Open a new pair each time you wear the lenses and throw them away when you take them out.
Monthly lenses - For those who want to wear the lenses often and will take care of their lenses. These work out at much better value if you wear lenses a few days a week. You will need a case for your lenses and a bottle of contact lens solution. You need to take out these lenses and put them in a case of solution until you wear them again. After one month you throw them away.
2 week lenses - I haven't used these myself but I do like the sound of them, some of the monthly's don't feel as fresh and comfortable in the eye after a couple of weeks so these sound like a good option.
PUTTING THEM IN AND TAKING THEM OUT (the bit everyone asks about)
When I first started wearing contact lenses I didn't actually know anybody who wore them, now I know a few people but most people still gasp and make noises when they find out I wear them (my boyfriend nearly fainter when he first saw me put them in, he's used to it now). Often I get asked "does it hurt to put them in?" well the answer is no. If it hurt I wouldn't wear them if it was torturous using lenses, they wouldn't be for sale if they caused pain and suffering. If is honestly now as routine and pain free as brushing my teeth.
Always make sure you have washed and dried your hands before putting them near your eyes!
If you look up, use one hand to gently pull your lower eyelid down and place the lens on the white of your eye, look straight ahead again and the lens will move into place, I put them in looking straight now, but at first it's easier to look up as you don't blink as much as when you are looking at it coming towards your eye. If you're still blinking try to use the one finger with the hand you are putting the lens in with to hold your lower lid and the other hand to hold open the top lid, the blinking WILL stop after you've done it a few times. It's just a natural reaction as you don't know what to expect.
Not half as scary as you'd think, when I first started wearing them I used to blink every time I put my hand near my eye and I used to have to use my two hands to hold my eye open whilst my mum put the lens in. After a week I was doing it with no problems whatsoever, when putting them in you don't really need to touch your eye, just place the lens onto the eye and it will stick itself. When taking it out you barely need to touch the lens and it will almost fall out onto your hand. There shouldn't be any need at all to poke and prod around your eye. If you struggle to put the lens in it's best to put it back in the solution and try again in a while as the more you try your eye is likely to water and make it more difficult.
I have had two lenses out of hundreds of pairs break in my eye, on one occasion half of the lens came out on my finger and the other half fell out of my eye, on the second occasion I had to flush my eye out and roll it around and it came out. I have heard of very rare occasions when people have had to have these removed by an optician or doctor but this is extremely rare!
Be careful if you have long nails as the lenses are delicate and they are like a strong cling film kind of texture so you can break them with nails but there shouldn't be any need to have your nails on the lenses. Again be careful taking them out with nails, as you could scratch your eye, just the same way. This might sound frightening, but I don't know many people who scratch their face when applying make up so there shouldn't be any need to scratch your eye.
It is very easy to put in and take out lenses and you may need help from someone at first but it honestly is so easy after a couple of times.
WHATEVER YOU DO, DON'T.................
- If you accidentally fall asleep in your lenses you will not do it again in a hurry, it leaves your eyes feeling absolutely terrible and can cause damage. I have to admit I have done this a few times it's easy to forget you have them in. You do get into the habit of taking them out each night though.
- Don't wear contact lenses in the shower
- Don't use tap water on your lenses
- Don't wear the lenses for too long - Different lenses have different recommended lengths of time to keep them in for. There is a reason for these, so do take notice of them. My first ever lenses I was advised not to wear them for longer than 8 hours, some others have been 12 hours. You need to give your eyes a rest from lenses and let them breathe to maintain good eye health.
Well for me there have been so many over the years so here are just a few of my personal positives:
* I used to do a lot of sport, glasses were constantly getting knocked off and broken and the lenses were so much easier (and less costly than new glasses). I'm not a fan of swimming but they would be a good idea for people who are.
* Even with these fancy lenses in glasses I still used to find I got a bit of glare from streetlights and car lights when it is dark, there was no glare at all with the lenses.
* No windscreen wipers needed! When I'm expecting to be out in wet weather I wear my lenses. I know somebody invented an umbrella but it isn't practical to be putting an umbrella up and down when you're out shopping and only going down two doors, but it's also not practical to have to wipe specks of rain off your glasses every time. Also in cold weather, glasses have a tendency to steam up when going into a warm building and it's so annoying.
* Sunglasses - I know these have also improved in appearance in recent years but prescription sunglasses are another thing I just can't get to grips with, they used to be ugly and usually it means carrying them around, or carrying your glasses around and swapping them each time you go indoors or out in the sunlight. Now I can choose whatever sunglasses I like and put them on with my contacts in.
* Because the lens covers the surface of your eye you have the same peripheral vision as you would have without glasses and you can't see under, over or out of the sides of contact lenses.
PRACTICAL AND TRENDY THINGS TO GET
In the pound shop recently I got a little travel case, it is a small box like a make up compact which contains a little mirror when you flip it open, there is a lens case in and 2 tiny plastic bottles that you can fill with your solution. For those who don't wear dailies this is a great little thing to have. The bottles can hold enough solution for 2 or 3 days so it's great for a weekend away, especially as the big bottles of solution would be too large to take as hand luggage on a plane. The whole travel case would easily fit into a make up bag.
You can buy large bottles and travel sized bottles, for obvious reasons the travel size bottles are handy but also, like most minis, are not as good value for money. Most supermarkets do value bottles of solution these days which is great. When I first started wearing lenses I used to pay £13 for a bottle of solution and I recently picked up 4 big bottles for under £10.
For me the case doesn't matter as I have the same prescription in both eyes. Most cases have letters on the lids so you know which is which. You can now get funky novelty cases too. Most cases cost only £1-2. There are a couple of styles of cases you can get, some are better than others at making sure the lenses are immersed in the liquid properly which is good if the lens case is not going to be sat still on a shelf all the time.
Cat's eyes, zombie eyes, checkered eyes, red eyes or just a different colour eye, whatever takes your fancy... most of these can now be got with or without prescription. The non-prescription lenses are cheaper and they can last different lengths of time. Some are single use and some can be used for 3 months or even a year although I don't think I personally would want to put lenses in a year after they were opened. These vary in price from about £10 - £30 depending on how long they last.
I don't mind wearing glasses so much now but it is nice to put the lenses in when I'm dressing up or just fancy a change. I would definitely recommend lenses to anyone who is thinking about wearing them. They are not nearly as scary as they may sound and within a few days it's more than likely you won't look back. I do order cheap lenses online now, but this is after years of wearing lenses and I still go for regular check ups and eye tests at the optician. For new wearers of lenses I would strongly suggest getting your first few months lenses from an optician. Lenses are not an option for some people with certain eye problems and not only will they be able to give you a more accurate prescription (some people's prescriptions are slightly altered from glasses to lenses) but they will also be able to show you how to correctly put them in and remove them and give you advice on caring for your eyes and lenses.
They will also give you a lens check up after a week or so to see how you are getting on with the lenses, to see how you are getting on with them and to make sure the prescription is correct and that the lenses and solution is suitable for your eyes.
Don't be put off if they are not as there are so many brands of lenses and solutions around these days that there is bound to be one that suits you.
Many opticians give you free trials of their contact lenses.
It's not all a breeze, I've had a couple of problems with lenses but I would guess that in well over 10 years of wearing lenses, only 2 or 3 times have I ever had a problem with them. The positives far outweigh the negatives for me and I'll continue to wear them until I can afford laser eye treatment! (I can't see that happening......ever!)
I have been wearing glasses for a couple of years now and I have become increasingly self conscious about this. I am not worried about the vanity side of things as such more that I am not really supposed to advertise products that my company does not sell while at work and this means that I do not have 'branded' glasses any more for work and therefore was prompted to try contact lenses.
I had my contact lens assessment at the same place that I received my glasses from, Specsavers. This was a meeting with my optician that lasted around 40 minutes and then meant that I was talked through contact lens options as well as asked a number of questions and I even had a few tests done to ensure that I was going to be able to wear contact lenses. When I first received my contact lenses someone in Specsavers actually put them in for me before leaving me to walk around town for 20 minutes to check that I was happy with the fit of them. It did take a little bit of getting used to as I was able to see properly without my glasses however I soon adapted to this and was incredibly pleased when I headed back in to Specsavers to say that I was happy with the lenses. I received trial lenses before ordering them for the first time just a few weeks later.
Contact lenses come in numerous forms these days and the ones that I tend to use are the 'dailies'. I love this option as I can choose to use the lenses when I want to rather than feeling the need to wear them all month just to get the best value from them. I have tried other varieties of lenses in the past but I find these to be the best for me. I find that my prescription of lenses is possibly slighter better than the prescription of my glasses but this could just be because my glasses are usually a little grubby and in need of a clean and my contact lenses are obviously pristine when I put them in place for the day.
I was initially worried about using contact lenses but I have found it to be a breeze. I ensure that my hands are clean before I put my lenses in and I always use a quality solution to keep my lenses in tip top condition if they are not daily disposables. It took me around a week to get completely confident with using my lenses and after this I have had no problem at all taking just a matter of seconds to put each lens in to my eye. Putting my lens in to place is very simple and I use one hand to keep my eye wide open and one hand to steady myself, line up the lens with my eye and then lightly touch in to place. Within about 30 seconds of putting my lens in I know that the lenses are clean and are not going to create a problem for me. Removing the lens is not quite as simple but it does not take me much longer. I hold my eye open with one hand and then use my thumb and middle finger to grip the lens before pushing it lightly to the edge of my eye to remove. This is usually something that is very simple for me and takes just a moment to do. Occasionally I find myself worrying that the lens will curl up, turn inside out or generally hurt my eye but I have never had a problem so far.
Overall I am incredibly pleased with contact lenses. They allow me to go without my glasses when doing something that could potentially lead to my glasses being lost such as going on a ride at the fair with my nieces & nephews. I use daily and monthly disposable lenses with fantastic results and I am very pleased with how easy to use they are and the fact that I can wear them every day for a whole month for just £30.00 which is reasonable enough for me.
As I'm sure you're all aware, we inherit the majority of our personality traits and physical features from our parents. My Dad was particularly generous with his genetic contribution and from him I not only recieved ugly feet and what I think of as a great sense of humour but also rediculously bad eyesight!
At the age of 11, after complaining to my parents that I couldn't see the blackboard at school they took me to the optitans for an eye test and I was told I needed glasses. With a prescription of -2.50 my eyesight was pretty poor! So I got my first pair of glasses but my Dad wouldn't let me get a nice funky designer pair like I wanted and instead I ended up with a boring navy blue pair (thankfully they were still better than the old plastic NHS specs you used to be able to get). I thought my glasses were ok at first but the more I looked at myself in them, the more faults I picked with them, although I couldn't deny the fact that I could see so much better with them on.
I had just started secondary school at the time and gave them a bit of a test run on a couple of occassions when I though no one was looking but unfortunately didn't have the confidence to let others see me in them. In the adolescent world where appearence and the opinions of your peers are everything I was paranoid that the other kids would think I looked stupid, so I didn't wear them and instead made a deal with a friend that if we needed to copy things off the board I would copy from her and if we needed to take dictation she would copy from me as I could write more quickly than she could. It was the perfect plan (unless one of us was off sick or on holiday).
Then we took our GCSE options and the following term we were to be seperated into different classes, it was at this point I realised that I might run into a spot of trouble and asked my Mum to take me back to the optitians to see about getting some contact lenses - thankfully she agreed.
***The introduction of contact lenses***
My eyesight had deteriorated by this point and I needed a new pair of glasses anyway so it was a good opportunity to go. The first contact lenses I got were from Specsavers. I had another general eye test and a good examination of my eyes to check that I was suitable to use contact lenses and then a member of staff at the optitians gave me a tester pair straight away and a teaching session where she showed me how to clean them, check they were the right way around (by holding the lense on the crease of the palm of your hand below your little finger and then bending your hand, if the two sides of the lense touch then it is the right way around, but if they fold back onto your hand then it is 'inside out' almost and needs to be put right other wise it is extremely uncomfortable on the eye - if you can get it in) and how to put them in and take them out. She explained the importance of washing and drying your hands thoroughly and avoiding sleeping in them and getting them wet to reduce the risk of running into problems. For the first day I was only allowed to wear them for two hours, the nice lady talked me through the process of putting the lenses in and I was amazed at how easy it was. It didn't hurt putting the lenses in, but it didn't feel normal either, almost like I had an eye lash or something in my eye, but not quite that bad. I was told that this was normal and that my eyes just needed to adjust and get used to the lenses being there. She was right and after I while I had almost forgotten they were there. I was truely amazed by the difference to my vision when wearing my contact lenses, it seemed like I had perfect vision, even better than when I was wearing my glasses. Everything is so clear and you don' have the frame of your glasses getting in the way. I instantly knew that contact lenses were for me.
Taking them out at home was also easier than I expected it to be after having a couple of practice runs at the optitians. The next day I could wear my lenses for four hours and the next day for six hours and so on, increasing by two hours each day until I had reached 12 hours, the lenses, I was told should not be worn for any longer than this.
My lenses were monthy disposables that I could wear everyday (although the optitians recommended that they only be worn for a maximum of six days and then have a one day break from wearing them) that then had to be cleaned an kept in a special contact lense solution overnight. To begin with it would take me a good 5 minutes to put my lenses in and take them out but I soon became an expert and learnt to do it in less than a minute I'm sure.
***A slight problem***
I carried on with these lenses for around 2 years and then happened to go into specsavers one day to see about getting an eye test when I was informed that I was extremely overdue for a contact lense check and that I should have had one three-six months after first getting the lenses. I had my contact lense check and was informed, despite religiously following the instructions given to me on that first day, that the underside of my eye lids were inflammed and that I had a form of conjuntivitis (not the gooey, sticky kind) and was told that I shouldn't have been wearing my lenses. How was I supposed to know?? I had had no symptoms and they had not told me that I needed this contact lense check or notified me of needing an appointment. I was advised to see my GP for a course of eye drops and told not to use my contact lenses for four weeks. I was devestated, my contact lenses had given me so much confidence and by this time I was in college. Thankfully, my glasses this time around were a little bit more stylish. So I completed my course of eye drops and promptly changed optitians.
***Daily Disposable Lenses***
I signed up with Donald and Attichinson (D&A) and immediately noticed a difference in their service. I told my optitian about my recent conjuntivis and they changed my contact lenses to daily disposables as these reduce the risk of problems because at the end of the day you just throw them in the bin. I was given Focus Dailies contact lenses. These lenses are all packaged individually in little plastic cases filled with lense fluid that keep them fresh until you use them. All you need to do is was your hands, make sure they are dry and that there are no traces of soap left on your hands as this can make your eyes sting, tear back the foil type top of the case, remove the lense, check its the right way around as you would with the other lenses I had (mentioned above) and put them in. Throw the packaging in the bin and when you have finished wearing the lenses wash and dry your hands, remove the lenses and throw them in the bin too. These amazing lenses are meant to have blink activated moisturizing agents to help prevent your eyes from drying out and I have to admit that I immediately noticed a difference, these lenses were so much more comfortable! Three months later I recieved a letter in the post informing me I needed a contact lense check, I made an appointment an after a thorough check up was told my eyes were fine!
I have never had any problems with these contact lenses and I am contacted by my optitians when I am due for a contact lense check, which is now usually once a year. You are not supposed to sleep in contact lenses (unless you have the 30 day continuous wear ones) or get them wet. But I will admit that on occassion I have accidentally fallen asleep on the sofa or something without taking them out. The times that I have done this I have found that when I wake up my vision is blurry with the lenses in and that I have some sleep like discharge in the corner of my eye which is quite gross. When this happens I just remove my lenses straight away and wear my glasses and as far as I am aware have had no problems as a result of this.
The general process for inserting and removing the lenses remains the same as with any other contact lenses as far as I am aware and this process is made easier if you have short finger nails. I used to bite my nails but have recently started to grow them and have noticed that the longer my nails are the more difficult it is to remove the lenses, so I now keep mine resonably short.
I have now been wearing daily disposable contact lenses for six years and can honestly say I have never encountered any problems with them. They are so easy to use and so much more convenient than having to clean and store monthly disposable lenses. I will admit that I have become a bit slack with the rules and do tend to wear my contacts for more than 12 hours a day, although this is not recommended. I have never liked wearing glasses as I find that the lenses get dirty really easily without me touching them, I hate the way they steam up if you go into somewhere warm after being outside when its cold and that if you happen to get caught in the rain you may as well be blind. If I attempt to look at something out of the corner of my eye I either cant see it because the arm of the glasses is in the way or because I literally just cant see it since I'm not looking through the lense of my glasses. You cant wear sunglasses unless they are prescription ones or you're willing to look a bit daft by putting them over the top of your normal glasses and I generally think I just don't suit glasses. But, thanks to my contact lenses I can avoid all of this. I honestly cannot fault my contact lenses or the service I have recieved from my optitian in any way and if my contacts were not an inanimate object, I would thank them a millions times over for giving me the confidence to get through the sterotypical, hormone fueled minefield that was secondary school.
I honestly believe that contact lenses have made my life better and regardless of how shallow and superficial that may make me out to be, I cannot imagine my life without them. I would happily recommend contact lenses to anyone, especially the daily disposable ones. They majority of the time I don't even realise I'm wearing them, they are that comfortable but If I get tired then they do tend to make my eyes feel a bit dry, but thats all and at that point I'm usually ready to remove them anyway.
Personally, I don't have a problem with putting things in and touching my eye, but after recommended contact lenses to a few people I am usually met with a horrified look and the statement "Oh, no! I couldn't stand touching my eye!" so if you're the sort of person that would struggle with this than maybe contact lenses aren't for you, but the difference to me personally was second to none, like having perfect vision all over again (until bed time anyway).
I pay £25.80 a month for 60 daily disposable lenses (30 days worth) from D&A/Boots optitians, they are delivered right to my door every month and this price includes free contact lense checks and also gives me 50% off the price of glasses. However, I'm sure that prices will vary depending on the optitians you used and the type of contact lenses that are best for you.
I apologise for this incredibly long review, but if you have made it this far than thanks for reading! :)
Age 15, optometrist says 'you need glasses', shock, horror and panic, at that time glasses denoted the stereotypical geek, and in a school filled with superficial kids in their stereotypical cliques, looks meant everything, as I already had an eczema face and crooked teeth, I was not happy.
A few years later, and glasses come into fashion, but as I approached the possibility of pursuing a career in the performing arts, I found that the necessity for contact lenses is perhaps imperative; hence a trip to the opticians with an appointment for contact lenses was booked.
My journey from four eyes to two:
As I had been with Boots Opticians for a fair few years, I decided to stay with them for my contact lenses. During the first appointment, my eyes were tested as per usual, and then the optician put in the disposable contact lenses for me. It didn't hurt, or feel weird or uncomfortable while wearing them for those few minutes, all I knew was that suddenly I could see clearly and I wasn't wearing glasses. She then removed them, again in a way that didn't feel uncomfortable. Once we had determined that these were the right lenses for me, the next step was the 'contact lens teach appointment'...here came the tricky bit.
The teach appointment is where you learn how to put the lenses in and take them out, before they send you off with a two week trial contact lens pack. Health and safety rules commenced the teaching, with the common sense 'always wash your hands before you touch the contact lens and put them in your eye...etc etc.' Then began the actual putting in these plastic bits in my eyes.
There are particular techniques that you use in order to put them in, however each time the lens approached my eye, my head would jerk back. About a millions tries later, resulting in being able to put only one lens in, but not being able to take out and having someone else dig her finger in my eye to remove it, resulting in a very sore eye, I was told to give it a couple of weeks and come back for a second teach. Teach number two...pretty much went the same way as teach one, it didn't help that the woman in charge of teaching me seemed very impatient, determined by her constant sighs, gritting of her teeth, pursing her lips and general facial expressions. On to teach three, a week or so later...my only accomplishment was creating a couple of very exasperated 'teachers'. As I could not put the lens in, they refused to give me my contact lens trial pack (due to legal reasons they have to see you put them in three times and take them out by yourself) and advised me to come back six months later. Unsure as to what would change in the six months, I left feeling a bit frustrated.
Six months later...
I walk through the doors, and the opticians/reception people look up...I can see what they're thinking... 'Oh Great...She's back!' They immediately whisk me away to the 'teach area', go through the same healthy and safety, bring out the contact lenses, and shock horror, I manage to put them in first time and take them out...for the required three times! Thus began my many months into the world of contact lenses.
Experience with disposable contacts so far:
Over time I have learnt my own way of putting and taking out the contacts so as to accommodate my girly fingernails, without poking my eyeball out. I use disposable contact lenses, as I have been advised that they are healthier. However there are still some downsides to the contacts. Once, a speck of dirt landed on the wrong side of the lens, which I only noticed once I put the lens in and my eye started to irritate as I could feel something in them. I removed the lens immediately and disposed of them, as my eye was already red, so there was no point putting in another pair.
Although after constant use, I have been able to extend the length of time I can wear them without my eyes getting irritated, I still find that up to now it has been limited to 3 hours before my eyes get tired. At this point I can start to feel lens in my eyes, my eyes feel tired and start to go red. I tend to try and wear it for an extra two to three hours. Headaches also occur, at least at the beginning until your eyes adjust to the lenses.
There are more positives than negatives though. Firstly, the clarity of vision compared to glasses is incredible. This is perhaps because after months of using one pair of glasses, they tend to get dirty and scratched, and no amount of washing them helps. When going to the cinema and watching a 3D movie, I find contacts easier to use as wearing two pairs of glasses is not comfortable! There is also the fact that during regular 2D movies, I don't have to keep looking over the frames of my glasses, or pushing my glasses back up as they slide down my nose, not a huge problem when you get used to wearing glasses, but you do tend to notice this problem more once you've experienced the wonderful world of contacts lenses. Of course I now also have the option of wearing either glasses or contact lenses when going for an audition.
The price of contact lenses vary from place to place, at the moment I pay around £27 for a pack of Disposable contact lenses that I receive every three months. The pack contains thirty pairs of lenses. It is quite pricey, but ties in with the Boots Plan whereby I get free contact lens appointments, and the price of my eye tests are also reduced.
I remember a few years before my contact lens days began, whilst I was considering them, a friend told me 'You have to really want them', I didn't quite understand her at the time, but now I do. I think it's not so much that I need to want them, as much as it is my eyes that need to want them, that need to get used the concept of putting something in my eyes, it can take a while to get used to. If like me, you're quite apprehensive about the prospect of putting something in your eye, and fail to do so on your first try then it might be worth waiting a few months before trying again. I could say that if you're anxious and you don't really need them then don't bother with them, but it really is a different world when wearing contact lenses...like the first time you wear glasses and suddenly you can see, contact lenses are like glasses in HD!
I have had short sightedness since I was a young child, and I do not remember a time when I didn't wear glasses and I was always insecure about them. I did not like having to wear them, but I literally had no choice in the matter and I wore my glasses for years. I felt that they were holding me back from things, and playing sports was not always the easiest thing as the glasses would never hold still. I broke and lost more pairs of glasses through my childhood then I am sure my mother would have liked, and as many of you will know, it is just a hassle wearing glasses sometimes.
When I 13, I finally asked my optician for lenses and I was actually surprised when they agreed and let me have a trial pair. I was initally worried about the lenses, as I had never tried anything like them, but after an eye test and eye health check, I was talked through the whole process and shown what I needed to do. The optician decided that Disposable lenses would be the best option for me, and I was given the Easy Vision, Aspheric Monthly Dispoable Lenses, which I would wear daily for a month and then change the pair of lenses for a fresh new pair.
My main worry was that it would hurt to put the lenses into my eyes, but once I got them in, they were perfectly fine. I could not feel them and there was no irritation to my eyes at all. I asked why I was given disposables, and I was told that this was because it is healthier for the eyes, easier on the cleaning and they are more comfortable to wear.
I quickly got used to having to take my lenses out at night, and the cleaning process is simple and quick, with no hassle. I found it easy to put them in and take them out everyday, and it soon became second nature. I had a little trouble remembering when to change the pair of lenses over at the end of each month, but this problem was soon overcome and when it comes to change them, I just pop the lenses I have been wearing down the sink, and the next morning I open a new pair and the month begins again.
I do not think I have a bad word to say about disposable lenses. They have made my life so much easier, in many different ways. I do not have to worry about my glasses during sports or whilst I am in the gym, I never get rain in my contact lenses, and my lenses have never misted up when I come into a warm house from the cold outdoors. I can literally go all day and not remember that I wear contact lenses. They are so comfortable and cause no irritation to my eyes. The only things you need to do with them is clean and store them at night, and change them each month. Simple and easy!
I really have been able to do so much more since I started wearing lenses, and anyone else that wears glasses or contacts will know what I mean. Even the simple things like being able to see the shampoo bottle when I am in the shower make such a difference in my life.
If you wear glasses and have not tried disposable contact lenses, I can not recommend them enough to you. I only pay £10 a month for mine from Specsavers, which includes all lotions and cases, all delivered to my door. It is a small price to pay for a life changing item, and it is amazing how something so small can make such a big difference. Get to your local opticians and give them a try, see just how different life can be. I give Disposable Contact Lenses a 5 out of 5 stars.
I have had to wear Glasses pretty much all day everyday for the last 4 years or so as my vision is so poor without them, I wore them for everything from Driving to watching to TV to even doing the simplest of everyday tasks and I grew to absolutely hate my Glasses. I am the type of person that takes pride in my appearance, admittedly I spend quite some time getting myself made up nice and styling my hair etc. but then as soon as I put my Glasses on I feel that is my whole look ruined. Don't get me wrong, Glasses suit some people but I felt mine aged me dramatically and totally killed my Image. So I thought it was about time I tried the alternative option which was Contact Lenses.
I knew very little about Contact Lenses as I'd never worn them before or done any Research into them, the only thing I'd ever heard was that they could be tricky to put in. But I told myself that any Negatives that Contact Lenses would have, would be nothing compared to the benefits of having them. I booked myself an appointment at Vision Express (not the cheapest of Opticians I know, but that is the one I've always visited) and I was actually quite excited to get my Contact Lenses fitted.
Firstly, the Optician carried out a Full Eye Test to see exactly what the condition of my Eyes were like and from there she was able to advise me on a suitable Contact Lense. I had the option of 3 different types of Lense to choose from all at different prices. I was going onto the Contact Lense scheme where you pay Monthly by Direct Debit for your lenses and they arrive every month in the post and I have to be honest I was more concerned with the cost rather than what different Features each Lense type had. I did opt for the Cheapest type which were the 'Horizon 55 Toric Contact Lenses' and these cost me £16.99 a month and they have a Special Design that allow more Oxygen into the eye when wearing them, keeping your eyes in a Healthier condition. The other 2 types that I didn't go for were between £20-£30 a month and they had a few extras which I can't really remember now but since I was a new Contact Lense wearer I wasn't bothered about getting anything too fancy.
The Optician put the Lenses in for me the First time so I could see what they felt like, she got them in easily as she obviously has a lot of experience - it wasn't nice feeling as though I had someone poking me in the eye though! But once they were in I was ecstatic that I could actually see without having to have Glasses on! I could feel the Lenses in my eyes a little bit since I'm used to Glasses, but this didn't bother me I was just so happy to be able to see. The Optician asked me to keep them in for about 40 minutes and go for a look around the shops to test them out and I found that my vision was SLIGHTLY more blurred than with Glasses but I could still see and I was really happy.
Before I left the Opticians they got me to Practice putting the Contact Lenses in and out a few times to see how I got on and honestly it was a Nightmare. I really struggle putting them in not because I was bothered about touching my eye, but because I couldn't control my blinking and everytime I was going to put the Lense in I kept blinking and it would fall off my finger, I couldn't help but think "How am I ever going to be able to put these in myself?" It was like I was poking myself in the eye! It took me at least 15 attempts to finally get them in and then the next obstacle was getting them out which was just as hard! The Contact Lenses are so light and Delicate you can't even really feel them so it is difficult to tell if you have got it on your finger or not. I actually made my eyes quite sore trying to get them out and I went home feeling dishheartened and sure that I wasn't going to be able to put them in myself.
When my set of Lenses arrived in the post, I went to put them in for work and spent half an hour or more and I could not get them in. I was really upset and close to giving up, but a few days later when I tried to get them in I did it successfully in about 10 minutes. That gave me hope and I was persistant and kept practicing everyday and then after about a week I could do it within a couple of minutes. So it jus shows that if you are persistant and you Practice you will get the hang of it! So don't give up to easily because I have been so much happier now that I can wear Contact Lenses instead of Glasses.
When I struggled putting them in I found that the trick was to make sure that my finger was Dry and the Lenses just Slightly wet, I put my face really close to the Mirror so I could aim right for the very centre of my eye and once I'd put the Lense on I'd close my eye and gently rub my lid which made the Lense move into place. The main difficulty I have is getting them out and I still have days when I find it tricky and my Eye can get a little bit sore, I find it hard because as I said earlier I can barely feel the Lense with it being so Delicate so I never know if I've got it on my finger or not. But this hasn't put me off wearing them, it's something that I think will become easier in time.
Along with my Monthly Contact Lenses I also receive Saline Solution to keep the Lenses in overnight and Clean them. This Solution has to be changed every night but I get more than enough Solution to do that. Contact Lenses to take a lot more time than Glasses as you can't just put them on your face just like that, but for me they are so worth it because of how much I hated my Glasses. To anyone who is thinking of giving Contacts a go then my advice would be not to give up easily if you are having difficulty with them, Practice makes Perfect!
It has now been a year since I first decided to try disposable contact lenses and I have not looked back since. My occupation meant that wearing glasses was more a hindrance than before and so I went to see my opticians. I decided on monthly disposables the main factor for this being the price. I started off with Optical Express paying £15 per month for the 'air optix' lenses, these are renowned as being a 'breathable lens' and slightly smaller than other lenses which I needed as I struggled with inserting other lenses before.
The only drawback I have found with monthly disposables is that if you lose one (which is quite a common occurrance for me!) you either have to start wearing the next months, or if you have a direct debit account which I had, you can make two claims for lost lenses a year (only one eye however). They are very easy to store and clean and feel fresh for the entire month. I have thus far had no problem with the lenses ripping which friends of mine have reported in the past with some of their brands of contacts.
Recently I have started buying my disposable contact lenses online which can be cheaper than the packages opticians offer. One thing to watch out for when purchasing online is the solution, which is an essential item when using contacts and which a lot of online stores sell separately to the contacts and likewise the cases. One online store that I have found to be good is asda, who are not only cheaper, but include solutions and cases as well as free postage over £25. I am now paying £28 for three months worth of the same lenses that I got from optical express for £15p/m.
Daily Disposable contact lenses are so important to me, in fact I do not think that I could cope without them. I have been wearing disposable contact lenses for over 10 years now and have never looked back (please pardon the pun)!
I first discovered contact lenses at the age of 17, having had to wear glasses for being shortsighted since I was 12 years old and with my eyes worsening I thought with college approaching then it was time to ditch the bottle bottom specs and give myself a new look. I had my first lenses from Specsavers and have had a direct debit arrangement with them since.
I pay £10 per month and have the contact lens delivered to my door quarterly. The package is thin enough to be posted directly through my mail box and contains 3 bottles of solution, 3 pairs of lenses and one contact lens storage pot. I receive regular yearly check-ups included in the price and am also entitled to half price gasses when needed. I find this excellent value and the customer care I have received from Specsavers is always second to non.
I know there are also various other lenses you can purchase and at even lower prices, I have the £10 lens as they help with my stigmatism. You can also purchase daily disposables if they suit your lifestyle more or if you are just wanting to wear them once in a while. In recent years there has also been the introduction of monthly continuous wear lenses, but obviously at an increased cost.
I have always found the lenses very easy to put in and very comfortable to wear. I take my lenses out every evening and place them in a pot of saline solution. I do wear my lens for around 10-15 hours a day and never have any problems with comfort. The solution can also be used to clean your lenses and as an eye rinse to clean and disinfect.
My contact lens have made a huge difference to the way I look and although I wear my glasses on occasions I would be terribly upset if I was ever told that contact lenses were no longer suitable for me. I would recommend anyone who wears glasses to try contact lenses, they can be a little uncomfortable at first but before long you will forget they are even there.
I have worn contact lenses for at least 7 years on and off and now I wear them all the time. I prefer to wear contact lenses now that my prescription is so high at -4.25 for both eyes. It means that I don't have to wear thick glasses and I can get a much bigger field of view which is especially important for driving. The only thing I don't use my lenses for is when I am at home and I am reading, watching TV and using the computer because I find that my lenses become dehydrated and I get dry eyes from this. I tend to wear my lenses for 8-12 hour, so basically the full working day.
The daily disposable lenses should be what most people wear nowadays. They are much better for the eyes because there is a much lower chance of infections as you put fresh new ones into the eyes each day. This also means that the lenses do not need to be cleaned everyday and this not only more convinent but for those that get a build up of protein or lipid on their lenses then they don't have to use removers to remove them. They are however more expensive than monthly lenses where only one lens is used for the whole month. With daily lenses, a new lens is used everyday so they come in a box of 30 for each eye.
Daily lenses are now the first choice for all new and existing contact lens wearers and they are fast replacing the monthly lenses. They may be more expensive but they are much better for the health of the eyes in the long run and they are more convenient. For those who wear their lenses occasionally daily wear contact lenses are the most suitable option.
I would recommend daily disposable contact lenses to those who are either new to lenses or those who are wearing monthly lenses.
I've worn contact lenses for a very long time now so feel justified in writing a review about disposable lenses.
Firstly, I guess it would be of benefit to understand exactly what a contact lens is and does. A contact lens is is a corrective, cosmetic, or therapeutic lens usually placed on the cornea of the eye. Apparently, according to an article I read, Leonardo da Vinci is credited with describing and sketching the first ideas for contact lenses in 1508, but it was more than 300 years later before contact lenses were actually fabricated and worn on the eye.
I am short sighted meaning I can see things very well that are close up but when it comes to images further away they are quite blurry and not in focus so I need something to help my eyes focus on those images. I had worn glasses for a very long time now and again, not needing them everyday, but was getting to that age when I pretty much needing them everyday for things like driving and so being a bit image conscious I didn't want to always have to wear glasses and wanted to look pretty but still be able to see so I took the plunge and made an appointment with my optician. Some people I think can look gorgeous in glasses but I haven't really found some that completely suit my face so I just wear them when I am having a day without contacts.
When I first started wearing contact lenses I opted for the lenses that you can wear for 30 days or more. These you put in your eyes, worn them all day and then when you took them out you had a little carry case that you put each one in, along with some solution and that kept them clean and moisturised until the next day you wore them. These were on the whole cheaper as you could wear them for longer than 30 days but to me they were a bit of a pain. If you wanted to take them out you had to make sure that you had your carry case with you or else you would not be able to store them correctly and would lose that lens. Then that would mean you used them too quickly and so had to open a new pair
Disposable lenses are more commonly called daily contact lenses as you wear them daily! I have now worn these for a number of years and really like them. They come in individually wrapped packets where the lens is in a contact solution. You then just pull back the plastic top and out comes the lens. I find this really handy as they are so easy to pop in your bag and you can always take spares with you if you need a new lens throughout the day. The great thing is, after wearing this lens during the day you just take it out at night and throw it away and stat with a new fresh one the next day.
There are so many different disposable lenses available to you nowadays. I think the best ones are ones that offer quite a lot of oxygen in them so your eyes can breathe. When we wear lenses it is hard for oxygen to get through them to the cornea of the eye and according to my optician this can cause dark spots on your eyes. Once you let oxygen get through by cutting down on the number of hours you wear your lenses this spots will go away but it's nice to know that you can get lenses that will help the oxygen get through. You can also purchase lenses for astigmatism and what I also like is that I have a slightly different prescription in each eye but this is not a problem either. You can buy different strength of lenses for each eye.
There are a number of ways in which you can get your contact lenses. Of course, you first stop has to be the optician to get your prescription and then you know what strength of lens you need. Then, you can fill your prescription at places such a Vision Express, D&A or Spec Savers which is good because I get check ups with Vision Express to make sure my lenses are still good for me. You can also look on the internet and order your lenses from a number of different websites offering cut price lenses, all you have to do is add your prescription and they will send your lenses in the post to you.
I know lenses can be a bit of a pain but for me they are a great invention and definitely a good option for someone who is too chicken to have laser eye surgery!
I have worn contact lenses since I was 14 years old. I started with standard contact lenses, then I moved onto monthly disposable lenses, and for the last 10 years I have been wearing daily disposable lenses. Like most people my main reason for wanting contact lenses rather than glasses was vanity, I didn't feel I suited the 'speccy' look, and I was also quite sporty in my younger days so glasses were not very convenient. I didn't have any major problems with standard or monthly contact lenses, fortunately I didn't suffer from any eye infections or serious discomfort, but I did find the cleaning routine a bit of a bore. Also, although those lenses were relatively comfortable, I was always aware that I was wearing them, and conscious that I had something in my eyes. I've always pushed my luck with the length of time I wear my lenses, and my optician recommended daily disposables because they are kinder to the eye when worn for extended periods of time. The contact lenses I wear are Soflens Daily Disposable lenses, which used to be called Soflens One Day lenses.
They are made by Bausch & Lomb, a US company that started as a small optical shop in 1853 and has now grown into a multi-billion dollar corporation with products sold in over 100 countries. As well as producing a range of contact lenses, they also produce various pharmaceuticals and products for cataract and retinal surgery.
Soflens Daily Disposables come in a cardboard pack containing 30 lenses. They can be bought online for under £10 per pack, however I get mine by post from Specsavers for £22 per month for 60 lenses as this also includes the cost of a regular contact lens and eye care check. Inside the cardboard pack each individual lens is stored in a blister pack, with a plastic bowl at the bottom, and a blue and white foil lid (like a yogurt pot lid). The lens floats in a buffered saline solution within the plastic bowl. Saline is a sterile solution of sodium chloride, or salt, in water in the ratio 9 grams per 1 litre of water. This is similar to the ratio found naturally in the human body, so it does not irritate or sting the delicate cornea when the lens is placed in the eye.
Each blister pack containing a lens has relevant information printed on the top. This information includes the power of the lens, useful if like me you have different prescriptions in each eye. It also states the expiry date, which is usually several years in the future. The lot number, confirmation that the product is sterile, and confirmation that the pack can be recycled is on the lid. Information on the fit of the lens can also be found on the lid, the base curve of these lenses is 8.6 and the diameter is 14.2. These measurements relate to the size and curvature of the lens, and will affect how comfortable they feel when placed on the cornea. For me, this is the ideal fit; I rarely notice I am wearing these lenses although in the past when I have worn other lenses with a larger diameter I have been uncomfortably aware of having them in my eyes. The lid is easy to peel back, and I have never experienced a lid ripping (unlike most yogurt pot lids!).
The lenses themselves, like most contact lenses, are made from a moulded silicone hydrogel, in this case hilafilcon B. It is a very soft, but durable material, however, those used to wearing continuous or monthly lenses may find them a little flimsy at first. I find them very natural feeling and unobtrusive in my eyes. They have a pale blue visibility tint, this is not noticeable when the lens is in the eye, it is added purely to assist the wearer with handling and inserting the lens. All lenses have a water content, the higher the water content the more comfortable the lens is likely to be and the less likely the eyes are to become dry and sore. These lenses have a 59% water content and I find them comfortable to wear for 10 - 12 hours per day (longer than recommended by my optician - but I've never been one for doing what I'm told!).
Bausch & Lomb have employed new technology in the production of these lenses, called High Definition Optics. This is designed to reduce blurriness, glare and halos, particularly in low light. It has also been shown to improve peripheral vision by between 1 - 3 degrees. I personally, have not noticed any difference, but then I never had any problems with these things before. It may be of some benefit to those who struggle with night driving, photographers, or those who play ball games, but then I don't know anyone who plays golf at night! Since the introduction of this new technology the cost of the lenses has not increased, so although I don't see any benefit myself I'm happy as long as I don't have to pay extra for it.
These lenses are perfect for me, comfortable, functional and reasonably priced. It works out at 73 pence per day, which to me is a good price for something that prevents me walking into walls and ignoring friends when I pass them in the street (yes, my eyesight is pretty poor). I still remember how difficult and uncomfortable it felt the first time I tried on contact lenses, but now it is just part of my normal morning and evening routine, like brushing my teeth. I do frequently push my lenses to the limits, wearing them for far longer than recommended, swimming in them in the sea, rivers and pools, but despite this I have not experienced any problems. I think daily disposable lenses are far more hygienic, they are certainly more convenient, and overall they are the perfect solution for me.
When I was at School I was very uncomfortable with the prospect of wearing glasses. I had amblyopia otherwise known as a lazy eye when I was little which resulted in me wearing a patch on one eye before I was given an operation at seven years of age .I do remember been called names at school so it is unsurprising that I didn't relish the idea of wearing glasses.
When I was 13 I was diagnosed of been short sighted and were given a pair of NHS glasses to wear for reading, writing and watching TV. While I was happy to watch TV at home I was less co operative with the idea of wearing them at school. I found it was creating difficulties for me as I wasn't able to read the blackboard so my mother agreed to buy me some contact lenses.
I do even twenty five years later the shock of been able to actually see the shape of leaves on trees and recognise friends across the road from the day I tried them I was hooked. In those days contact lenses were changed once a year and these were quite damaging to the eye. All lenses are now classed as disposable but the time they last is variable. I now suffer damage to my blood vessels in my eyes but these days the contact lenses do have much higher water content but you do need to get your eyes checked regularly to ensure these are not causing any damage.
Contact lenses these days can be worn as a fashion accessory with different coloured lenses available and I have often seen teenagers been fitted for these while I have been attending the opticians. While these are probably are much safer than the lenses I wore due to damage I have suffered I would never consider contact lenses purely to change the colour of my eyes.
I have tried a variety of lenses in the twenty five years I have been wearing them. I did try some continual wear contact lenses but I developed a condition called Blepharitis which meant I had to remove my lenses every evening to cleanse my eyes with a solution of baby shampoo and water and then left them out over night so I could cleanse them again in the morning so for me these became a pointless extra so reverted to monthly disposable. Daily disposable lenses are also available but not something I have personally tried.
I am also diagnosed as having an astigmatism which does mean that I have to wear weighed contact lenses. This does mean it can take longer for the lenses to settle on my eye but it does show there are solutions to many problems so even if you think you can't wear lenses but would like to it is worth having a chat with your optician.
As I have learnt over the years how important cleaning lenses correctly. It is important to wash both he front and back before putting them away in daily changed contact lenses solution. It is also recommended you change your lenses case monthly despite this spec savers only give me one case for a three month supply.
If you are considering purchasing contact lenses then do think about how and when you would wear them. If it is something you would only wear occasionally then daily disposables may be appropriate for you. The lower water content lenses are not suitable for wearing for longer than twelve hours. If you are the sort who goes out on a night out and forgets to take your lenses out the loner wearing lenses may be suitable for you. The longer you can wear them seems to increase the cost so it is worth considering your lifestyle before visiting the optician. Contact lenses are available online but I have avoided these as I know the importance of having the health of your eyes checked and having lenses fitted properly.
I do still enjoy wearing contact lenses and find that the lenses I wear now are the most comfortable I have ever worn and hope to continue to wear them in the future for as long as my eye remain healthy enough. I would recommend that if you are considering them it is worth giving them a try and most opticians do give free trials so enjoy the view.
I first tried contact lenses when I was about 14 but I found that a lot of the solutions irritated my eyes so I went back to glasses. A couple years later I decided to give contact lenses another go as I did not want to have to wear my glasses all of them time. That was several years ago now and I cannot remember the last time I wore a pair of glasses, I would recommend contact lenses to anyone who wanted an alternative to glasses.
Types of Contact Lenses
There are different types of contact lenses available including both hard lenses and soft lenses. I have always had the soft Toric lenses, they look like a very small round thick piece of plastic with a slight blue tint to them, however this does not show up when they are worn. Toric lenses are used to help correct astigmatisms in the eyes which I have in one of my eyes. Soft contact lenses are very flimsy and pliable this is due to them containing 30% - 40% water, the fact that they are very soft and flexible means that they are very comfortable to wear. Soft contact lenses are also made from an oxygen permeable plastic, this also adds to their comfort when worn. You can also opt for hard contact lenses however I am not sure about these as I have never actually tried them. I do know people that have tried them but said they were not that comfortable and they have since switched to the soft lenses.
Not only do you have a choice of hard or soft lenses you can also purchase lenses which last for different amounts of time, for example there are daily disposable lenses, monthly lenses and extended wear lenses (I think these last several months) I have only ever had the monthly lenses, I tend to put a new pair in at the beginning of each month trying to stick to the same date each time, although that does not always happen as I sometimes end up damaging a lens and starting a new pair earlier then planned. You are told that you should not wear a pair of contact lenses longer than stated, however I have in the past worn mine for over a month and I have to say you can tell the difference, after a month I find that the lenses are no longer as comfortable as they should be and sometimes the surface becomes slightly damaged or scratched meaning it can effect your vision.
There are hundreds of different cleaning solutions and it really is a case of trial and error to find one that suits you. The solutions were the main problem I had the first time I tried contact lenses, however I now use a saline solution which is suitable for sensitive eyes, The solution I use is suitable for both cleaning and storing my contact lenses in whilst I am not wearing them, however I do think you can get separate ones which are only suitable for either cleaning or storing. I personally like tthe saline ones as they do everything, they leave your lenses clean and clear and also prevent them from drying out when they are not being worn. Although I get most of my solution from my opticians, I do often end up running out so I end up buying my own from places such as Superdrug. Many pharmacies sell various types of contact lens solution, obviously there is not such a wide range compared to what the options can offer but they usually have several to choose from, I tend to go for Superdrugs own make of saline solution as it is very similar to the one I receive form the options and both cleans and stores my lenses.
Storing and Cleaning
When you collect your contact lenses from the opticians depending on the type of arrangement you have you often collect a few months supply of cleaning solution and storage pots. It is very important to keep your contact lenses properly cleaned and stored correctly, any small piece of dirt or make up that gets onto the lese and not cleaned off will then transfer into your eye causing irritation and possible infections. I clean my lenses every night after taking them out, I remove one lens and squirt a small amount of cleaning solution over it in the palm of my hand and slightly rub it with my finger just to remove any 'bits' that have got stuck to it, I then squirt a small amount of the same solution in the storage pot and place the lens in it over night until I am ready to put them in again the next morning. The storage pots I have are small and flat, they consist of 2 halves each with a screw lid one white (right lens) and one blue (left lens) There are many different types of storage pots available, I only use these ones as they come with my solution, however other styles can be purchased from shops such as Superdrug and Boots. A swell as keeping your lenses clean it is also very important to store them correctly, as I said previously you keep soft lenses when not worn in a small pot of the solution, this prevents them from drying out Once soft contact lenses have dried out they can no longer be worn, instead of being very a very soft, bendy and pliable piece of plastic they become very hard and brittle. If your lenses do dry out for what ever reason they only thing you can do is throw them away and start again with a new pair, do not try to wear them!!!!
How Well Contact Lenses Last
Generally I find that my contact lenses last pretty well. I have the monthly ones as I said and it is not often that I have to start a new pair early due to the current pair getting damages. Because the soft contact lenses are so soft and thin they can tear quite easily if you are not careful. I have also had a few pairs that have felt uncomfortable in my eye and when I have removed the lenses to investigate there is a small chuck missing from the edge of the lens that was there when I put the lenses in in the morning. Although this does not often happen with me it is important to check you lenses for damage just incase they do become ripped or torn as wearing a damaged lens can be very uncomfortable and even damage your eyes surface by scratching it.
How to put contact lenses in
Now this is a bit of a tricky one as everyone has their own technique. I find the easiest way is to take the lens out of the pot and squirt a little bit of solution onto it and place it on the end of my finger, then with the other hand gentle hold down your bottom eye lid, then place the lens up to your eye, you will feel it contact with the surface of your eye, once you feel this you can let go. In theory give a couple of blinks and the lens will stay in place that's the idea anyway, sometimes the lens will not be quite in place and when you let go and blink the lens will drop out of your eye. The optician shows you how to successfully put the contact lenses in but it really is practise and finding which method suits you best.
I pay for my contact lenses via a monthly direct debit and then collect a 6 months supply of lenses, solution and storage pots. I pay £ 17.50 a month for my lenses, however they should be more expensive that this at about £25, I had a few problems with my opticians supplying me with my lenses and they reduced my monthly bill for me to compensate and prevent me from leaving. I think in the long run contact lenses probably do work out a bit more expensive then glasses but for me it is worth the money as I really do not get on with my glasses, especially after wearing contact lenses for so many years.
Are Contact Lenses Comfortable?
Basically yes they are. Providing your lenses are clean and there is nothing on them you cannot tell you are wearing them.. From time to time the lenses may move a little in your eyes especially if you rub your eyes but I would no say they were uncomfortable. It does hurt if you get something in your eye and it gets under your lens, this could also scratch the surface of your eye and cause infection if you do remove the grit from your eye as soon as possible. Personally I do find that occasionally in the mornings if I am particularly tired my lenses do feel a little uncomfortable in my eyes but after a few blinks this soon wears off. Overall I would say wearing soft contact lenses is very comfortable, some people say they could not have something in their eye all the time, but you really do forget that they are there.
No more glasses
You can put them in in the morning and forget about them
Not that expensive
Wide range of lenses and accessories to choose form
Soft lenses can get damaged.
Hurts if you get something under them!