LASIK surgery, or laser eye surgery, is used to correct a variety of eye issues, adjusting the cornea to improve sight. By correcting vision problems, LASIK can alleviate the need for glasses or contact lenses.
1 AnswerA contact lens is a medical device and all contact lenses, even purely cosmetic ones, should be prescribed and properly fitted by a licensed eye care professional. You should never purchase or wear any contact lens not prescribed by an eye care professional. Buying contact lenses without a prescription can pose serious risk to your sight or eye health.
Soft contact lenses have a long history of providing wearers with a safe and effective form of vision correction when properly worn and cared for. However, research shows that many contact lens wearers do not follow instructions for virtually all steps involved in soft contact lens wear, including hand washing, case hygiene, lens disinfection and following the recommended lens replacement schedule.
By not following instructions on proper wear and care, contact lens wearers are more likely to experience discomfort and may put themselves at greater risk for infection or other serious complications, such as microbial keratitis,
Infections in contact lens wearers are often found among individuals who improperly store, handle, or disinfect their contacts. Cleaning and regularly changing your contact lens case is important because bacteria can grow in contact lens cases. Never rinse your lenses in water from the tap. Tap water contains many impurities that can contaminate or damage your lenses and may lead to serious eye infections and loss of vision. Also avoid rewetting your contact lenses with tap water or saliva.
1 AnswerHere are some questions you should ask your child's eye care provider about contact lenses:
- Are contact lenses appropriate vision correction for my child’s vision problem?
- Is my child old enough to use contact lenses?
- What type of contact lenses would be best?
- What is involved in caring for contact lenses?
- How can I help my child properly maintain his lenses?
The type of contact lens your practitioner recommends will depend on your child's vision correction requirements. Both gas-permeable and soft contact lenses have been used successfully with children.
Disposable soft contact lenses (both the daily disposable and reusable varieties) are a popular choice for kids. Children who opt for reusable contacts need to remember to be vigilant about discarding and replacing their lenses. This can be marked on a family calendar or prompted by subscribing to a free contact lens reminder app that sends e-mail or text alerts.
Daily disposable lenses can be a great option for kids who are not quite ready to take on the daily responsibility of cleaning and caring for their contacts. Daily disposable contact lenses are one of the healthiest, most convenient ways to wear contact lenses.
Parents may also want to explore contact lenses that offer protection from ultraviolet (UV) rays. Younger eyes are more susceptible to exposure to the sun's harmful rays than adults. Compared to their parents, children have larger pupils (allowing more light into their eyes), clearer lenses and are outside without eye protection much more frequently and for longer periods than most adults. It is estimated that children's annual dose of UV radiation is three times that of adults.
While most sunglasses can help block UV rays from entering through the lenses, most frame styles do not prevent rays from reaching the eyes by getting around the sides, top and bottom of the glasses. UV-blocking contact lenses, which should be worn in conjunction with high-quality UV-blocking sunglasses and a wide-brimmed hat, can provide an important measure of additional eye protection. Most contact lenses, however, do not offer UV protection. Of those that do, not all provide similar absorption levels. For more information ask your child's eye health professional for guidance.
1 AnswerData from a three-year multisite study that assessed the effects of glasses and contact lenses on the self-perception of nearsighted children support earlier findings on improved self-confidence in children who wear contact lenses. The study found that contact lenses improve vision-related quality of life in children compared with glasses, especially in the areas of appearance and athletics.
Contacts can even help to improve academic confidence, especially among children who are unhappy with their glasses and may not regularly wear them at school or to study. In particular, girls show an improved sense of self-confidence and self-worth when they wear contacts instead of glasses.
1 AnswerFirst, an eye examination is needed to determine your child's suitability for contact lenses. This typically includes a refraction to determine the power of the lens and an assessment of eye health. Prescriptions for contact lenses and glasses may be similar but are not interchangeable.
More than half of optometrists feel it is appropriate to introduce a child to soft contact lenses between the ages of 10 to 12, with daily disposable contact lenses being the most frequently prescribed contacts for this age group, according to an American Optometric Association study.
Age is one factor in determining whether a child is a good candidate for contacts but not the only one. Nearly all respondents say that a child's interest and motivation to wear contact lenses is the most important factor to consider in fitting a child with contacts. Also very important to doctors are a child's maturity level, the child's ability to take care of contact lenses by themselves, and the child's personal hygiene habits. While only a very small percentage of doctors say they are less likely to fit contact lenses in children, poor hygiene and maturity levels seen in younger children were most often cited as reasons.
Studies demonstrate that children who need refractive error correction are capable of wearing and caring for soft contact lenses. Eye care professionals will typically evaluate a child's maturity and level of parental support in deciding whether a child is ready for contact lenses.
1 AnswerBoth glasses and contact lenses are good options for children who need vision correction.
Recent research on children's vision correction demonstrates that contact lenses provide additional benefits to children beyond simply correcting their vision, including significantly improving how they feel about their physical appearance, acceptance among friends and ability to play sports, compared with kids who wear glasses. Contacts can even help to improve academic confidence among children who are unhappy with their glasses and may not regularly wear them at school or to study.
Most kids who try contacts find them a comfortable option and prefer them over glasses. Although contact lenses will not be the right answer for every child with vision problems, if your child seems like a good candidate, you should not hesitate to discuss this option with your eye care professional.
1 AnswerHealthwise answered
With most hard contact lenses, there will be a 2- to 4-week break-in period during which you wear the lenses for increasingly longer periods of time each day. Soft contact lenses usually take less time to break in.
The care of contact lenses varies according to the type of lens. Care may range from minimal (disposable extended-wear soft lenses) to extensive (conventional soft lenses). It is important to follow directions for lens care carefully to avoid vision-threatening complications. If you have a hard time following the cleaning steps, tell your eye care professional. You may be able to simplify the cleaning steps. Or you may want to switch to disposable lenses.
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1 AnswerUCLA Health answered
"New techniques for corneal transplantation are associated with improved safety and more rapid visual recovery along with equal or, in some cases, better visual results," says Anthony Aldave, MD, director of the Cornea Service at UCLA’s Jules Stein Eye Institute. Corneal transplants are designed to remove and replace only the affected layer of a damaged cornea. For people whose vision is affected by swelling in the cornea’s innermost layer, the Descemet stripping endothelial keratoplasty (DSEK), which involves peeling off the diseased inner layer and replacing it with the innermost layer from a donor cornea, avoids the astigmatism (irregular shape of the cornea, resulting in blurred vision) commonly associated with full-thickness corneal transplantation.
By contrast, the deep anterior lamellar keratoplasty (DALK) involves replacing everything but the cornea’s inner layer. The primary advantage of this procedure, for people with corneal scarring or keratoconus but with a healthy endothelium (inner layer), is that it eliminates the risk of rejection and failure of the endothelial cells that are critical to keeping the cornea clear. As the person retains his or her own corneal endothelium, the donor tissue does not need to have a healthy endothelium, and thus the requirements for the donor cornea are less stringent.
Another approach to corneal transplantation uses a femtosecond laser -- the same technology employed for making flaps in LASIK surgery -- to produce incisions in the cornea that enable the doctor to exercise far more precision in what is removed, so that the transplanted tissue fits into the cornea like interlocking pieces of a puzzle. "As with the DSEK, this provides the potential to dramatically decrease postoperative astigmatism because of the precision of the laser, and it strengthens the wound site so that it is more resistant to traumatic opening in the event of eye injury following surgery," says Dr. Aldave.
Some people with diseased corneas who are not candidates for transplantation using donor tissue may be candidates for an artificial-cornea transplant. “These are patients who had previously been told there was nothing that could be done for them,” Dr. Aldave notes. With the new approaches, Dr. Aldave concludes, “we can now customize corneal transplant surgery for the individual patient, resulting in better outcomes.”
1 AnswerUCLA Health answered“People care about having scars on their faces, and they want to get back to work quickly,” Robert A. Goldberg, M.D., chief of orbital and ophthalmic plastic surgery and co-director of the aesthetic reconstructive surgery service at the UCLA Jules Stein Eye Institute (JSEI), says. “If we can limit disfigurement and pain, the whole experience is better for patients psychologically, and they heal better as a result.”