Scleral Contact Lenses: The Basics

Here at Merivale Vision Care, we pride ourselves on providing our patients with the best vision possible. We offer many speciality vision solutions. Certain people will benefit from aids such as magnifiers, while others require personalized glasses solutions such as prisms. In some cases, speciality contact lenses, such as scleral contacts, will be the solution. Read on to learn more!

What are scleral contacts?

Scleral contacts are hard plastic contact lenses used in certain eye conditions. These lenses have actually been around for quite some time. However, they have recently gained popularity again due to their numerous benefits. You may be thinking: those lenses look big! You’re right, these lenses are larger than standard soft contacts. However, they’re actually quite comfortable! Because of where they sit on your eyes, these lenses are designed to be comfortable for all day wear.



Who would benefit from scleral contacts?

There are a few main situations that scleral contact lenses are used for. First, they are used for keratoconus. Keratoconus is an eye condition in which the front of the eye (the cornea) thins and takes on a more cone-line shape. Keratoconus is diagnosed by optometrists and ophthalmologists. In moderate to advanced keratoconus, patients will notice that even with their glasses or soft contacts on, they won’t be able to see very well. What scleral lenses do in these cases is vault over the thinned cornea to create an even surface again. This improves vision to better than that with glasses and contact lenses.

Sclerals can also be used in cases of advanced dry eye. When scleral lenses are put on, they are first filled with a preservative-free saline solution. This means that there is a pool of tears hydrating the eye all day-a big bonus for those with dry eyes!

How do I go about being fit in scleral contacts?

If you think you would be a candidate for sclerals then give our office a call! One of our optometrists would be happy to discuss your particular case and whether or not you would benefit from these lenses. During a fitting appointment, the optometrist will try multiple lenses on your eyes and take a series of measurements to determine the correct lens for each eye. The fitting of a scleral lens takes more time than a soft contact lens fitting because the final lens will be 100% custom for your eyes. We’ll then order in your lenses and you will be taught how to insert and remove them with one of our opticians. We will ensure that your lenses are providing you with the best vision and comfort over a series of appointments. 



Any other questions? Leave them below or give us a call, we’d be happy to give you more information!

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