Disposable Contact Lenses
Disposable contact lenses are just as you might have expected - disposable. They are soft contact lenses designed to be worn for a certain amount of time then thrown away and replaced. First developed in 1987, the term "disposable" is used to describe a number of different contact lenses. Lenses referred to as disposable range from those
to those worn for up to
thirty days straight.
The diversity of disposable contact lenses is virtually unbounded.
The incredible range of disposable contact lenses available on the market today is attributable to rapid advancements in technology. Unfortunately with this increased choice comes additional confusion over which disposable lenses are right for you. When it comes to deciding, the first step is to visit an eye-care practitioner - this will most likely be your optometrist. Your optometrist will educate you on the many types of disposable lenses available and fit you with the best contact lenses for your eye.
Due to the diversity of disposable lenses it's important to understand the industry's terminology.
True disposable contact lenses, or
daily disposable contact lenses,
are replaced very frequently; such contact lenses are worn for a short period of time before being replaced, generally two weeks or less.
Frequent replacement contact lenses,
while still referred to as disposable lenses, can last much longer than daily disposable lenses; these contact lenses are generally replaced each month or longer, depending on the contact lens and how well it's cared for.
Two additional terms which should be clarified is the difference between replacement schedules and wearing schedules. Replacement schedule refers to the frequency with which contact lenses are to be replaced regardless of wear; while wearing schedule refers to the amount of time a contact lens can be worn.
To better understand the many types of disposable contact lenses they have been grouped below according to replacement and wearing schedule.
Daily disposable contact lenses are designed to be worn just once; they are thrown out at the end of each day and new contacts are put in the following day. These contact lenses are ideal for those who lack the patience, time, and/or discipline to clean lenses.
Frequent replacement contact lenses are designed to be worn each day then taken out, cleaned, and stored before bedtime. The replacement frequency for these contact lenses can range from weekly to monthly, or even bi-monthly, and varies largely among individuals. These contacts are slightly less costly than daily disposable lenses and are currently the most widely used disposable contact lenses today.
Extended wear contact lenses are designed to be worn for 30 days straight. The concept of extended wear contact lenses has been around for a long time, but only recently has technology improved enough to make them a reality. These contact lenses are ideal for those of us who would prefer to put contacts in and then forget about them for a month. Although the actual lenses are slightly more costly than other disposable lenses, the benefits they offer may very well outweigh the costs.
Disposable Lens Articles
O2 Optix - A revolutionary increase in oxygen permeability.