What to Expect during a Contact Lens Exam
Contact lenses can correct a wide range of vision problems, making it possible to enjoy clearer vision without wearing eyeglasses. When deciding to wear contact lenses, it’s important to understand that extra steps must be taken beyond a standard eye exam to ensure each set of contact lenses fits and works properly.
The doctors of Monterey County Eye Associates would like to take a moment to discuss what to expect during a contact lens exam for our patients in Monterey, Salinas, King City, CA, and neighboring areas.
Comprehensive Eye Exam
The first part of a contact lens exam includes a standard, comprehensive eye exam. During the comprehensive exam, both vision and eye health are assessed. The eyes may be checked for conditions such as glaucoma and other eye diseases. Vision acuity and refraction tests are also performed to evaluate vision.
Patients who already wear contact lenses will need to have the surface of their eyes examined to determine if their contact lenses have changed the surface of their eyes. If so, changes will need to be made to their contact prescription.
Determining Contact Lens Type
After the eyes are examined, specifics about contact lenses can be discussed. During this time patients will discuss what they would like with their contact lenses. Things to consider may include whether the patient wants daily disposable lenses, soft lenses or rigid gas permeable lenses.
Specific recommendations may be given to patients depending on their eye health and vision needs. Also, patients who already wear contacts may wish to discuss different contact lens options and may need to address issues like discomfort with their current lenses.
Tear Film Evaluation
A tear film evaluation is sometimes performed during a contact lens exam. This test is generally performed on patients who suffer from dry eyes.
A tear film evaluation assesses the tear film, a protective coating covering the surface of the eye. Contact lens wearers need to have a suitable tear film in order to comfortably wear contacts.
Patients without a sufficient tear film may not be good candidates for contact lenses. However, there are contact lens options that may work and all options can be discussed.
Measuring the Eye Surface
One of the next steps in a contact lens exam is measuring the eye surface. The eye surface must be precisely measured in order to create contact lenses that comfortably fit the unique shape of each patient’s eyes and properly correct vision.
Checking the Fit of Contact Lenses
The last step in a contact lens exam is checking the fit of the contact lenses. A trial pair is worn and checked during your exam to make sure that they fit properly and are aligned correctly on the surface of the eye.
After the fit of the contacts is assessed, the prescription is checked to make sure the contacts sufficiently correct vision. Trial contact lenses are then generally worn for a week after which time a follow-up exam is scheduled.
During the follow-up exam, any issues that may have come up during the trial week can be addressed or, if the contact lenses fit comfortably and the prescription is accurate, new contact lenses can be ordered.
Are Contact Lenses Right for You?
If you want to enjoy clearer vision without the use of eyeglasses, contact lenses may be right for you. To find out if you’re a candidate or to schedule a contact lens exam, call (831) 424-1150.