For people who would like to wear contact lenses but have not been successful before, or maybe your eye doctor told you were not able to – scleral lenses could be the answer!
Scleral contact lenses are large diameter gas permeable (GP) contact lenses which provide the same benefits as regular GP lenses such as:
- Visual acuity
- Long-term comfort
- Longer wearing schedules
- Ease of insert and removal
- Less complications
Scleral lenses get their name because they vault over the entire cornea and rest on the sclera (the white part of the eye). This larger size is a great advantage offering more stability than traditional GP lenses (they have minimal risk of dislodging from the eye), making them even more comfortable. You see, they are created to fit with little to no movement of the lens during blinking, creating optimum stability on the eye in comparison to traditional GP corneal lenses.
These lenses offer the comfort of a soft lens with the benefits of a GP lens, and even more so for those with sensitive eyes or irregularly shaped corneas. Due to the design of scleral lenses vaulting over the cornea and resting only on the less sensitive sclera, these contact lenses are much more comfortable for people with keratoconus.
Who can benefit from scleral lenses? Almost anyone who would prefer to have the clearest and sharpest vision possible with a contact lens is a suitable candidate. They are especially advantageous for people with irregular corneas or irregularly shaped eyes, and dry eye syndrome.
The cost of scleral lenses is a bit higher than traditional contact lenses due to the fact that scleral lenses are custom made to fit each patient accordingly, to provide the best and clearest possible vision and best comfort possible for a contact lens. Additionally, your eye doctor utilizes special imaging devices and automated measuring tools to properly fit scleral lenses which is not done for soft contact lens fittings. Your vision or medical insurance may be able to cover a portion of the costs. Your eye doctor will discuss with you the specific costs for your individual needs and insurance.