Contact Lenses for Astigmatism and Presbyopia

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Before I became an optometrist, I used to think I wasn’t a good candidate for contact lenses. I wasn’t entirely sure why, but I thought it had to do with my high prescription and astigmatism. At that time, I was also concerned that instead of clear, comfortable vision, contacts would give me uncomfortable, tolerable vision.

In the past couple years, contact lens technology has improved so much that you can now achieve clear and comfortable vision. No matter how high your prescription is, or if you’re having difficulty seeing up close, contact lenses can provide crisp sight — even if you have astigmatism or presbyopia.

Astigmatism

Astigmatism is a common topic that arises when discussing someone’s eyeglass or contact lens prescription. When the optometrist mentions astigmatism, it often catches the patient off guard because they aren’t aware they have it. Astigmatism is normal, and majority of people have at least a small amount of it.

What Is Astigmatism?

The eye must focus light onto the retina to see clearly. This works best if the eyeball is spherical because it gives the eye one sharp focus point. Astigmatism can be defined as how much your eye deviates from being spherical.

How Is an Eye with Astigmatism Shaped?

Imagine the front surface of an eyeball that is lightly squeezed from the top. The shape of the eyeball would change in a way where the horizontal curvature will be relatively the same, but the vertical curvature will be steeper: astigmatism is this difference in curvature. If the shape has multiple curvatures, then it has multiple focus points, as seen above.

Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

Contact lenses are not necessary to correct a small amount of astigmatism, but a moderate amount should be corrected. Non-spherical soft contact lenses correct astigmatism because they stay stable and don’t rotate on the eye. Soft contact lenses have become very advanced, and with lenses like the Biofinity XR Toric, they can be customized to your unique astigmatism level and rotation, regardless of prescription.

Presbyopia

What is Presbyopia?

Presbyopia is an age-related condition which occurs when your eyes lose the ability to focus on close objects. This worsens over time and mostly affects those after the age of 40.

Contact Lenses for Presbyopia

Are there contact lenses that help you see near and far at the same time, after you start losing your range of vision in your 40s? Are there lenses that correct distance vision even if you have astigmatism? The answer to both is YES!

Acuvue 1-Day Moist Multifocal and MyDay Multifocal are great daily disposable choices if you don’t need to correct astigmatism in your contact lenses. If you need to correct astigmatism in your contacts, Bausch and Lomb Ultra Multifocal for Astigmatism and Biofinity Toric Multifocal are awesome options that come as a monthly disposable.

Why You Should Try Today’s Multifocals

A lot of my patients have told me they’ve tried multifocal contact lenses in the past and they didn’t work for them. Then, I fit them with our newer lenses, and they’re surprised by how well they work. That’s because the newer lenses have improved upon the optics and designs of the past.

For example, the Acuvue 1-Day Moist Multifocal works well because they realized a lot of failure with past multifocal designs was due to the lenses not being optimized for the patient’s pupil. If you don’t have the correct balance of near and far through your pupil, you will have trouble seeing. 

The Acuvue 1-Day Moist Multifocal’s optic zone is based on pupil sizes determined by studying thousands of people. They realized pupil sizes differ greatly based on age and prescription, then modified their lenses to provide the correct balance of near and far. They also designed their lenses to be stable over your pupil so you can look through the correct part of the lens.

If you want to be free from reading glasses while wearing contact lenses, talk to me about our multifocal contact lenses!

Advanced Contact Lenses at 10/10 Optics

I hope you can see how advanced contact lenses are now. If you’re interested in wearing contact lenses, we’ll find the right lens for you! Not only do we prescribe contacts that correct for astigmatism and presbyopia, but we also carry lenses that can change your eye color or slow nearsightedness progression. 10/10 Optics has what you’re looking for, and I look forward to seeing you soon!

Written by Dr. Chen of 1010 Optics