Multifocal contact lenses help individuals diagnosed with presbyopia or esotropia. If you’re over the age of 40, or if your child struggles to focus on specific elements in their environment, then your doctor might feel that this corrective option is the best choice to restore your sight to its previous level.
Most people above the age of 40 prefer wearing contacts over glasses because of their active lifestyle. When presbyopia becomes an issue, then it becomes difficult to focus on objects which are near. Before the option for multifocal contact lenses, the only option available to someone who wanted to read a menu with their contacts in was to have a pair of reading glasses nearby.
Some multifocal contact lenses offer two distinct lens powers for correction: one for distance vision and the other for close objects. There are designs which offer a progressive eyeglass lens within the structure of the contact to create the feeling of natural vision.
These are the pros and cons to look at if your doctor recently diagnosed you with presbyopia or your child requires a similar corrective lens.
List of the Pros of Multifocal Contact Lenses
1. Multifocal contacts eliminate the need for head movement.
If you’re using a computer and where multifocal glasses, then there is a need to move the head in various directions to see the content you’re reading. That occurs because each part of the lens offers a different magnification point for focus. When using contacts with multifocal points, you can move your vision focus to each key area without the same movement shifts. This change prevents neck fatigue, eye strain, and the uncomfortable symptoms associated with them.
2. There is more participation in activities permitted with multifocal contact lenses.
If you’re a presbyopic patient, then you may have specific restrictions to follow when wearing your glasses. Even when you don’t have those issues, the multifocal glasses get in the way, limiting what you can do. Multifocal contact lenses remove those restrictions. These soft contacts let you stay as active as you want because they offer you better peripheral vision. That could mean the difference between driving yourself to the store or having someone drive you there.
3. Contacts are more comfortable than glasses for many people.
When you wear glasses full-time each day, there are specific wear points on the ears and the bridge of the nose which get painful and irritated over time. The weight of the glasses even triggers headaches in some people. Contacts take this issue away. Although it can be challenging to put the multifocal contact lenses in for the first few times because of how they wear on the eye, eliminating the fatigue from all-day wear is a benefit which is definitely worth considering.
4. The contact lens forms to the curvature of your eye.
Glasses cause visual distortions when they get dirty, scratched, or chipped. Even with regular cleaning and proper care, multifocal contact lenses provide a better option. Because they fit the curvature of your eye, you receive a wider field of view with clarity at the level you require. These contacts don’t offer obstructions which get in the way of your vision like glasses do either, while creating fewer visual distortions during daily wear. They are comfortable, useful, and help to keep you active at any age.
5. Multifocal contact lenses eliminate teasing and harmful stigmas.
Although multifocal contact lenses are a product which targets senior populations, some children require this product to correct their vision too. Children are given a prescription for multifocal lenses because they have alignment problems due to a lack of control over their eye muscles. This process creates a form of accommodative esotropia, which the multifocal lenses work to create. Issuing contacts instead of glasses prevents teasing, while older adults could forego the negative stigma of being required to wear these items for their sight.
6. These contacts don’t get in the way of what you wear.
Contacts create additional fashion opportunities to consider when comparing them to glasses. With multifocal contact lenses, you’re no longer forced to pick clothing that complements your specs to create the perfect look. You can pop in the contacts, get ready for the day, and enjoy the freedom of being able to look the way you want without restrictions.
7. You won’t struggle with weather-related issues.
Have you ever put on a cold pair of glasses in the morning? The lenses tend to fog up, making it difficult to see. If you don’t have sunglasses which work with your vision or fit over your prescription specs, then the brightness of the sun becomes an issue too. When you have multifocal contact lenses to support your vision, these weather-related issues typically go away. They aren’t affected by the changes in temperature like a glass or plastic lens. You can also wear standard sunglasses with your contacts without worry about prescription costs.
8. They are available in all contact lens formats today.
If you require multifocal contact lenses, then you have plenty of choices available to you for comfortable wear. They’re available as RGP (rigid gas permeable) and soft lens materials. You can choose options meant for daily wear. There are extended-wear designs available from some manufacturers too. Even one-day disposables are an option if you don’t want the hassle of lens care. That means you can still focus on the lifestyle you want while supporting your healthy vision.
9. It helps people in specific professions maintain their productivity.
People who are good candidates for multifocal contact lenses include individuals who perform detailed work. Mechanics, electricians, and those who perform plenty of computer work have the need to see up close, but they also require more flexibility in movement, which a pair of glasses won’t always provide. That means you can stay productive even if your vision begins to change as you get older.
List of the Cons of Multifocal Contact Lenses
1. It can be a struggle to apply contact lenses to the eye.
The idea of sticking something onto your eyeball is an issue which doesn’t go away for some patients. Although proper technique and practice rectifies the issue for most people who have multifocal contact lenses, it doesn’t go away for everyone. You may find that it is too difficult to put on contacts compared to slipping on a pair of glasses, no matter how much practice you have in front of the mirror each morning.
2. Contacts can reduce oxygen contact with your eye.
When you wear multifocal contact lenses, you’re creating a “buffer” between the outside world and your cornea. The lens blocks oxygen contact with your eye. If you’ve been diagnosed with dry eye syndrome, then you’ll want to speak with your doctor about the pros and cons of contacts first to ensure they would work for you. There are some instances of dry eye syndrome being caused by wearing contacts too.
3. These contacts might contribute to computer vision syndrome.
Although there are fewer head movements required with multifocal contact lenses compared to glasses when using a computer, they do not eliminate all issues with digital eye strain. Some people may discover that multifocal contact lenses actually contribute to the issue. Headaches, blurred vision, neck pain, shoulder pain, and eye strain are all common symptoms associated with this condition.
You can reduce the severity of these unwanted symptoms with your multifocal contact lenses by following the 20/20/20 rule. Take a 20-second break to view something which is 20 feet away from you for every 20 minutes you are working at your computer. Then work to correct any poor posture issues and the viewing distance, if necessary, to gain access to more of the benefits instead of the disadvantages.
4. You don’t get to avoid the routine of lens care.
It is easier to care for multifocal contact lenses than it is to care for glasses with the same prescription. You’re not relieved of all your care duties, however, as contacts require proper cleaning each day to maintain their benefits. That is especially true for those who are given hard contact lenses over soft, disposable ones. If you fail to cleanse your contacts correctly, then you face an increased risk of eye infections, blindness, and other serious conditions.
5. The contact lenses must be taken out each night for best results.
If you fall asleep with your multifocal contact lenses still in place, then your eyes will feel very dry when waking up. You may notice that they feel irritated and gritty too. Most people discover that their eyes are red and bloodshot, as if they’d spent the night drinking, when this occurs.
Talk to your doctor about the possibility of using extended-wear multifocal contact lenses if you find this issue affects you frequently. There are some contacts approved for 30 days of continuous use.
6. The RGP contact lenses provide the best vision enhancement.
If you’re looking at multifocal contact lenses options and clarity is your first priority, then your best option is the RGP lenses. Their firm design offers a better corrective opportunity when compared to the soft options, which means you’re forced to go through the adaptive process with these corrective lenses. Talk with your doctor if you’re struggling with RGP lenses to see if a hybrid multifocal contact might help you settle some of the disadvantages you’re experiencing.
7. It takes time for your vision to adapt to multifocal contact lenses.
If you slip on a pair of multifocal glasses, then the benefit to your vision occurs immediately. Although it takes a little time to adjust to the various levels of focus built into the lens, there is no lag time in processing the visual information. When you use multifocal contact lenses, the experience is a little different. Because you’re looking through two different focal powers when looking at objects at a distance, the image won’t be perfectly clear at first. You’ll see the near portion blur the distance some. The opposite also happens. It will take a few days for your brain to compensate for the difference in information to create clarity.
8. These contacts are not a miracle cure.
Many patients get multifocal contact lenses with the hopes that it will restore their vision completely to what it was before. There are some people who have this goal met. The goal of these contacts is to restore your general vision to correct for distance problems – not to give you 20/20 vision. The chances that you’ll read the small print of a disclaimer are relatively small. If you’re realistic about what this corrective technology offers, then you’ll be satisfied with the results it produces.
These multifocal contact lenses pros and cons look at the design of the lens, its corrective nature, and the comfort level of the person who must wear them every day. If you struggle with your glasses and want a suitable alternative, then speak with your doctor today about the benefits of contacts. Although they aren’t the best option for everyone, many adults over the age of 40 (and kids too) prefer this vision correction option.