Why Are Some Kinds Of Contacts Not Available For People With Astigmatism?

If you've ever looked into or worn contact lenses and have astigmatism, you probably know that your selections were limited. Some types of contacts aren't available to people with astigmatism, which can be disappointing if you're looking for a specific type of contact or color. If you're interested in trying contacts again, here's why you went through that and why you should still give it a shot.

What Astigmatism Does

Astigmatism is a disorder of the eye where the cornea isn't symmetrically curved. Normal, healthy eyes are perfectly round, but a cornea with astigmatism is closer to the shape of an oval. This affects the way that you see the world because it impacts how light enters the eye. However, it also literally changes the shape of the surface of your eye, so your eyes are a bit different from people who don't have astigmatism.

What's Needed to Stay Put

Contact lenses don't work unless they're firmly situated over your cornea. So if you have an abnormally curved eye, your vision prescription won't match the average person's contact lenses.

In order to stay put in your shape, the first thing the contact lens provider has to do is to create custom-fitted astigmatism lenses in your exact eye dimensions. However, they also need to use specific materials to ensure that the lens maintains its shape and doesn't flatten out over your eye.

As a result, thinner types of materials and things like hydrogels typically don't hold their shape very well, so they often aren't available for astigmatism patients.

Bigger Selections

The good news is, if you haven't looked into contacts in a while because you were previously discouraged, there are big advances being made in contacts for astigmatism all the time. Thinner materials are now available for astigmatism patients that still maintain some rigidity to keep their shape and provide vision correction. This is great news for people with astigmatism since thinner materials tend to be more comfortable when being worn for long periods. They also typically breathe better than thicker contacts, so you can maintain moisture in your eye more easily. If you haven't seen the eye doctor and talked about contacts in a while, it's worth a visit. You may be pleasantly surprised at the selection that's available to you these days.

Contact an eye clinic like Olympia Eye Clinic, Inc., P.S. if you're interested in getting contact lenses. Be sure to tell them about your prior experience with contacts and what it is that you're looking for.