According to the American Optometric Association, astigmatism is extremely common, although it is an eye issue that is often misunderstood. While that word gets thrown around a lot, along with being nearsighted and farsighted, many people have no idea what that diagnosis means.
In this guide, we’ll share some basic background on what astigmatism is, as well as go into detail on what the best contacts on the market are to correct astigmatism.
Astigmatism is a defect in either the cornea of the eye, or sometimes the lens, which causes the cornea to be shaped like a football, instead of the regular baseball shape. This defect disables the eye from light refracting properly and impacts your vision in a number of ways.
Three common symptoms of astigmatism are:
1. Blurred or Distorted Vision
2. Eye Strain
A strange fact about astigmatism is that it can both increase or decrease over time. Therefore, young people with astigmatism, have a chance that the defect might correct itself; meanwhile, people who have perfect vision into their twenties can still suffer from astigmatism later in life.
Contacts built to address astigmatism cost more than traditional contacts. The chart below looks at the price of astigmatism contacts by every major contact lens provider:
Daily disposable contacts have become popular as of recent, because of their ease of use. Instead of having to worry about the solution, storage, and switching contacts every so often, dailies make the process simple.
If you currently use, or intend to use dailies and suffer from astigmatism, don’t fret, there are still contacts available for you to use. In this section will detail which are the best contacts on the market.
Put out by the popular Acuvue brand, 1-Day Acuvue Moist for Astigmatism is a trusted choice. This contact uses silicone hydrogel, which makes the contacts easy to insert into the eye. It is also armored with a patented surface treatment, which helps the lenses resist deposits.
To help more specifically with astigmatism, which requires the lens to stay in place throughout the day, 1-Day Acuvue Moist for Astigmatism uses a Blink Stabilized design, as well as Laceron Technology, to keep the lenses comfortable and in place all day long.
All-in-all this lens is a great daily option for anyone who deals with astigmatism.
clariti contacts are made by CooperVision. This company has served the contact-wearing community since 1980 and is known for building reliable and high-quality contacts. clariti 1Day Toric is a top of the line daily, built specifically for astigmatism. This contact won the “Contact Lens Product of the Year” at the 2012 Optician Awards in part for its combination of silicone hydrogel (a material known for its top of the line hydrating properties) with its astigmatism prevention, all packaged into a daily disposable.
Beyond its comfort and technical prowess, the clariti 1day toric lens is designed to give wearers brighter eyes, enhancing their natural color.
Dailies are created by CIBA Vision and they are specifically designed to stay tight to the eye so that the different zones of eyesight corrections can work appropriately.
Patients with astigmatism often have other issues, such as near and farsightedness, which also needs to be addressed and these Dailies are made to please.
In addition to the design, these Dailies also have an AquaRelease feature, which is a blink-activated moisturizer. This keeps the patient’s eyes hydrated all day long.
There are many contact wearers that are more comfortable with soft contact lenses that can be worn for two weeks, or even a month. Whether it is the affordability that comes when contacts are worn every day or the comfort they provide, here are the best soft contact lenses for astigmatism.
These Air Optix contacts are meant to be worn for thirty days and add clarity and consistency to the wearer’s sight. Breathability and comfort are the two main ideals for this brand.
Air Optix for Astigmatism is specifically designed to help get more oxygen to the eye and since our eyes garner oxygen directly from the air, instead of traveling through the bloodstream, it is vital that contacts are as breathable as possible.
Biofinity is the brand that is known for being consistently reliable in providing clear and uninterrupted vision. However, with the Biofinity Toric contacts, wearers are also equipped with the Biofinity Aquaform Comfort Science Technology.
This technology helps eyes remain hydrated for much longer and at a much steadier pace than competing toric contacts.
The problem with many toric contact brands is the stabilization; especially when patients have astigmatism. It is extremely hard to keep stable vision with contacts that continuously slide around the eye.
Thankfully, with the Acuvue Oasys for Astigmatism, their Accelerated Stabilization Design ensures that they remain on the cornea, to keep the contacts in place all the time. This helps the contacts provide consistent and unwavering correction, all day, every day.
Despite the choices that soft lenses and dailies continue to make, some patients still prefer RGP lenses.
More than that, though, many patients must have RGP lenses so that they can see properly. There are some forms and severities of astigmatism that require RGP lenses.
So, here are two of the most prevalent RGP Lenses:
Polymer Technology created the Boston EO RGP lenses, which help contact wearers with severe astigmatism ensure clarity and precision in their sight.
The harder lens fits directly to the eye, reshaping the cornea so that the light will be refracted through the proper shape; thus, correcting astigmatism.
Hailed as the most breathable RGP lens, this contact is comfortable and safe enough for the eye to be worn overnight.
This lens is also extremely resilient and can be worn for up to one year of daily wear. This makes both the contacts easy to fit into your daily lifestyle and affordable.
Out of the two featured RGP Lenses, the O-Perm 60 is the more affordable RGP contact. For (literally) only a few dollars more at most online retailers, this brand can be worn for a year.
There are a few personal considerations that patients should think about before they decide on the right contacts to correct their astigmatism.
The first consideration is the amount of time and frequency that the patent will be wearing their contacts. While dailies are nice for once and a while wear, they tend to get expensive if they are worn every day. Plus, if the contacts are going to be worn for a long amount of time, it is important that the chosen contacts cater to that.
The second consideration is how sharp does the patient want their vision. Obviously, everyone wants to basically be able to see through walls. However, some people care about the sharpness of their vision more than others. If the patient is extremely picky about what they can see, RGP lenses are still the best bet.
However, if comfortability is more important than soft lenses might be the best option.
In summation, there are many options out there now for patients who are diagnosed with astigmatism and none of those options include wearing glasses (if you don’t want to).
So, between doctor recommendations and personal preference, hopefully, this synopsis of the best contacts for astigmatism has helped narrow down and clarify your choices.
by Insider Envy Staff