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Supporting your move to contact lenses

Thinking of trying out contact lenses? We spoke to our Contact Lens Optician Sam Culham to find out what to expect when you decide to explore whether lenses are the right option for you. 

What’s the first step to trying out contact lenses? 

The next time you are in for an eye exam, mention to the optometrist that you would like to try contact lenses and they will check your prescription to see whether it’s possible – in most cases it is. Alternatively, if you have recently had an eye exam just give us a call to check you are compatible. 

You can then book a tolerance appointment where our contact lens optician will check everything is ok to put a pair of lenses in. We will then fit you with a pair of prescription lenses and you can go and have a wander for half an hour to see if they are comfy and test out how your vision feels. This appointment is free of charge. 

What happens next? 

If you decide they are for you, we will book you in for a further one-hour appointment where we will help you learn how to put the lenses in and take them out.  

When you wear contact lenses there is an increased risk of eye infections, so we will take the time to talk through how to handle your lenses hygienically. 

You will be given a short supply of your prescription lenses to try over the next few weeks. 

How soon do I need to come back in? 

We will book you in for a follow up appointment a few weeks later to check how you’re getting on. Then on average we see patients every six months if they are a frequent lens wearer or every 12 months if they wear them infrequently. For these appointments it’s important you come wearing your lenses unless you are having an issue with them. We will check the prescription and fit are working well and make sure the lenses aren’t causing any issues. 

You will still need to have a regular eye examination as we just focus on the front of the eye at the contact lens appointment. 

Are contact lenses suitable for everyone? 

It’s possible to source contact lenses for most prescriptions – for example there are options available for people with astigmatism or those who need multifocal lenses for reading and distance vision. 

However, there may be some medical conditions which make contact lenses unsuitable or situations where people just don’t like the feel of them. For example, if you suffer from dry eyes you may not be able to wear them as much as you would like. 

Some people find they feel squeamish about using contact lenses, though we will take the time to help you learn how to put them in and take them out which can help in this case. 

What contact lenses do you stock? 

As an independent optician we can source contact lenses from any supplier. We regularly use the major manufacturers such as Johnson & Johnson, Acuvue, Coopervision and Alcon but can also source from smaller companies who can make more complex prescriptions and bespoke lenses.  

Our most popular lenses are daily disposables. They are convenient as they need no cleaning – you wear them once and then throw them away. However other options are available including two weekly, monthly and yearly lenses. Each has different cleaning requirements, but we will talk you through this when you come to your initial appointment. 

Can I switch between wearing contact lenses and glasses? 

Absolutely! Many people we see choose just to wear contact lenses for social occasions or when they want to vary their look, while others who aren’t so happy in specs will wear their contact lenses most of the time.  

Considering contact lenses? Give us a call to book an appointment.

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