If your vision isn’t crisp enough with regular soft contacts or you don’t like the feel of rigid gas permeable contacts, then hybrid contact lenses may be right for you. At Washington Eye Doctors, our eye doctors are experienced in fitting these specialty contacts. We’ll perform a thorough contact lenses eye exam in our Washington, D.C. eye care center to determine your candidacy.
What are hybrid contact lenses?
These specialized contacts are made with a hard rigid gas permeable center surrounded by a soft contact lens on the periphery. The basic principle behind these lenses is that they give the superior visual clarity of a rigid contact lens along with the smooth comfort of a soft contact lens.
Who needs hybrid contact lenses?
Not everyone is a good candidate for hybrid contact lenses, and only an experienced eye doctor can make the recommendation.
"For those patients who require a clarity of vision that soft lenses can’t provide, but want the comfort of soft lenses, hybrid lenses are a great option. Hybrid contact lenses provide crisp and stable vision like a rigid contact lens, but the feel of a soft lens," says Dr. Michael Rosenblatt, at Washington Eye Doctors.
In general, common criteria include:
- Standard soft contact lenses aren’t able to give you sharp vision
- A high amount of astigmatism
- Having keratoconus or other corneal distortion (caused by corneal trauma or a corneal transplant)
- Having had refractive surgery that lead to an unsatisfactory outcome
- Extreme dry eyes
Frequently, the above conditions can be treated with rigid gas permeable contact lenses. However, this solution doesn’t work for everyone. Depending on the amount of corneal distortion, it can be difficult to fit hard lenses properly and comfortably over the pupil and cornea. But hybrid contact lenses combine the best of both worlds – the hard part of the lens provides crisp optics and vaults over the cornea, while the soft “skirt” of the contact holds it in place comfortably.
Can anyone wear hybrid contact lenses?
Typically, if you can wear standard soft contact lenses, then most likely you can wear hybrid contact lenses. Yet, unless you have one of the conditions listed above, there are no great benefits to wearing hybrid lenses. Also, a few types of vision conditions, such as lenticular astigmatism instead of corneal astigmatism, are unsuitable for hybrid contact lenses. Our Washington, D.C. eye doctor will check your eyes thoroughly to determine if a hybrid lens can fit.
Do hybrid contact lenses require extra care?
Most hybrid lenses are cleaned and stored in the same way as regular soft contact lenses. But you must take care not to apply too much pressure to the center region of the lens when cleaning or rubbing it, because it’s rigid and can be broken. After a short training session on how to handle hybrid contact lenses, you will be able to insert, remove, and clean them properly.
Unsatisfied with your vision from regular contacts? Book an eye exam for hybrid contact lenses
Hybrid contact lenses are growing in popularity as a quality solution for complex visual needs. To find out if they can work for you, schedule an eye exam in our Washington, D.C. optometry practice.