Are you considering contact lenses?
Contact lenses are a fantastic alternative to spectacles, particularly for activities such as sport. With recent advances in design technology, contact lenses are now more comfortable, easier to care for and are more affordable.
Most people can successfully wear contact lenses, and with the range of frequent replacement lenses now available they can be considered an affordable accessory for times when your glasses might not be practical. Contact lenses can be successfully alternated with glasses, and most wearers will work out a balance that suits their lifestyle without compromising day to day vision comfort.
If you decide you would like to try contact lenses your optometrist will be able to advise you on the best type for your individual needs.
Contact lenses vary in a number of ways:
- Some lenses are designed to be used once and then discarded (daily disposables), ideal for occasional sport or social use;
- Some lenses are designed to be used for longer periods- 2 weekly, monthly or in some instances even longer; and
- Some lenses are even suitable to sleep in for short periods. (Extended wear)
- Contact lenses can be tinted for a subtle or more dramatic cosmetic effect
- Multifocal lenses are also available for the more mature clients
As contact lenses sit directly on the eye tissue it is vital that they are fitted and assessed by your optometrist, ensuring minimal risks of discomfort and possible infection.
- Contact lens fitting involves a number of visits. Medicare generally covers the initial examination. Subsequent consultations are generally not covered by Medicare unless your prescription falls within certain guidelines. (Ian and Jo can advise you about this at the time of the initial consultation.)
- At the second visit your optometrist will teach you insertion and removal, handling and care of your contact lenses. You will be given a pair of lenses at this appointment to trial for comfort and clarity of vision.
- It is most important after the initial trial of lenses that you return wearing the lenses for further assessment. In some cases the lens fit may need to be altered to give optimum comfort or vision, so several visits may be needed. Extended wear lenses require more visits in the initial fitting phase to ensure eye health and vision are not being affected.
- Once a successful fit has been established, we recommend an examination every twelve months if you are wearing the lenses more than a few days a week, and every six months for extended wear lenses.
What does it cost?
- Initial comprehensive visit is a scheduled fee and claimable from Medicare.
- Contact Lens fitting including teaching insertion and removal, trial lenses as needed and follow up visits to assess comfort, eye health, fit and vision. (Generally not claimable from Medicare)
- Contact lens costs vary according to the type of lens prescribed and quantity purchased. If the lenses are designed to be used for more than one day the cost of solutions to maintain them will also need to be considered.