Teens and Contact Lenses: How Old Do You Have to Be to Get Contacts

Last updated on April 17th, 2017 at 01:58 am

Some are tired of dealing with thick glasses and desire the freedom of prescription contact lenses, or just desire better vision during sports. Others wish to switch to a glasses-free appearance, or try novelty or colored contact lenses. What should you, as a parent, know for contacts for teens? Here are some factors to consider.

How Old Do You Have to Be to Get Contacts and Other Teen’s Questions about Lens

There is no age limitation: children can use them, and so can seniors. Many eye care professionals begin to encourage contact lens wear at age 11 to 14.

The real issue for teenagers is not age, however whether they are responsible adequate to use and take care of contact lenses effectively. Parents, teens, and their eye care specialist should make this choice together.

Why not simply wear eyeglasses?

Teenagers are uncomfortable, and they typically feel more attractive and accepted if they do not have a pair of spectacles in front of their eyes. Contact lenses may assist teens feel greater self-esteem and more at ease around others. They’re also an advantage for active teenagers who play sports.

See also: Best Eyeglass Lenses

How much care do get in touch with lenses need?

Cleaning programs are much easier than ever. Most people use just one bottle of multi-purpose solution and a case. Of course, one type of contact lens — day-to-day disposable — does not need a cleansing routine, since the lenses are tossed in the trash at the end of every day. For this factor, day-to-day non reusable contacts are an excellent vision correction option for the majority of teens.

For contacts that do need care, many eye care specialists report that teenagers and children are more thorough about cleaning their contact lenses than are adults, who after years of using them often end up being more casual about lens care. And young people are more cautious about following directions provided by a doctor.

Do you need a prescription to get contacts?

Yes. The FDA categorizes contact lenses as a medical device. Contacts must fit effectively on the eye — if they do not, serious eye health problems can result. That’s why they need to be fitted by an eye care professional, who will write a prescription for the appropriate size, shape, power, and brand name of lenses.

By law, you require a prescription in order to acquire contact lenses. This holds true even if your contacts have no vision correction in them, such as some color contacts or special-effect contacts.

A contact lens fitting is painless and takes hardly any time. It can be carried out in combination with a regular eye test.

See also: Buying Contact Lenses Without A Prescription

Teens and Contact Lenses: How Old Do You Have to Be to Get Contacts

Are contact lenses basically pricey than glasses?

It’s difficult to generalize about cost. Just like glasses, the cost of contact lenses varies commonly, depending on the brand name, the prescription, and how typically the lenses are changed. You can constantly call your eye care practitioner and request a price range. You ought to likewise take into consideration the cost of cleaning supplies and cases, plus the fact that a backup pair of eyeglasses is recommended.

Daily non reusable contacts are a special case, since they do not need any cleaning materials or containers. It depends on the brand name and the supplier, however daily disposables can cost about $1 each day, making them inexpensive for many people.

What if a lens gets lost or torn?

Make sure you discuss with your optometrist what you can do to change a contact lens that has been torn, damaged or lost. If you use non reusable contacts, you don’t have the cost or trouble of stressing over a replacement because you’ll currently have a supply of lenses on hand.

Are contacts comfy?

Modern contact lenses are designed to be extremely comfy. The majority of are made of a soft material that is barely visible, if at all, when the lenses are put on the eyes. Eye care professionals have very sophisticated tools for measuring the eyes and ensuring the lenses fit well.

Contacts can end up being uneasy gradually if they build up dirt or allergens that adhere to the them. Correct care and cleaning typically prevents this. Naturally, this is not a worry about day-to-day disposables due to the fact that any collected allergens or other lens deposits are discarded with the lens each night.

Is it difficult to put contact lenses on?

Some individuals wonder if it will harm to apply contact lenses to their eyes for the first time. The worry is easy to understand, and it’s related to the hesitation they may have to touch their eyes. But after discovering how to place and eliminate their lenses, most people find it completely pain-free, and quite simple to do.

Also read: Solutions for Contact Lens Discomfort

Are contact lenses safe?

For teens, contact lenses may be much safer than eyeglasses in many circumstances. Unlike glasses, they are not likely to be damaged during football, basketball, and other rough sports. Plus, if a sport needs safety goggles or a ski mask, it is more convenient and comfortable to wear them over contact lenses than over glasses.

Otherwise, contact lenses are extremely safe if cared for appropriately. Your teen shouldn’t swap lenses with pals or wear them longer than recommended, and regular eye exams are essential. Keep in mind: if at any time your eyes do not look excellent, feel great or see well — see your doctor.

Can a contact lens get stuck behind the eye?

A natural membrane barrier exists in between the front and the back of the eye. That could never ever, ever happen.

What about color and unique result contact lenses?

These lenses are fun and safe as long as they are appropriately fitted and recommended by an eye care specialist. Never buy them at a beauty salon, swap satisfy, or at any shop or online without a prescription. Any retailer who attempts to sell you lenses because method is running outside of the law and doesn’t care about the safety of your eyes.

Bear in mind that if cosmetic contacts are used just occasionally, they need to be properly saved and decontaminated in between using.

Is it OKAY try out a buddy’s contact lenses?

No, not even if the lenses have no vision correction in them. Unsafe microorganisms that cause major eye infections can be passed along that way. A lot of physicians will provide a complimentary trial pair so your teen can see how lenses feel or look.

Is it alright to sleep in contacts?

Not all contact lenses are designed for overnight wear. Further, not everybody’s eyes can adjust to this, even when using the appropriate lenses. Only an eye care professional can evaluate whether someone is a prospect to oversleep contacts, and no one must sleep with their lenses in unless their eye care practitioner states it’s okay.

In addition, overnight wear likewise creates a little degree of increased health risk. The healthiest way to use contacts is to remove and discard them each night.

What are the different types of contact lenses?

Contact lenses can be organized together based on numerous characteristics:

  • Lens product — either soft or gas permeable (likewise called RGPs)
  • Wear schedule — that is, whether you take them out to sleep. Lenses can be FDA-approved for either day-to-day wear or extended (over night) wear.
  • Replacement schedule, or how often you get rid of them and start wearing a fresh set. Non reusable lenses are most popular and depending on the brand name, they are replaced daily, monthly, or each or two weeks.

In addition to the above, lenses come in colors and in designs for people who require bifocals, or have astigmatism.

How do I choose the right lenses?

Your doctor can help you decide which mix of features is right for your teenager. In addition to your teenager’s choices, the doctor will evaluate his/her eye structure, tears, and visual acuity to identify what lenses will be healthy and comfortable.

If you have astigmatism or a strong prescription, don’t you need to wear glasses rather?

Not any longer! That might have held true years back, and now contact lenses are manufactured in styles that work for almost everyone, consisting of people with astigmatism.

Also read: Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

Is LASIK a better choice for teens than contact lenses?

LASIK is not an alternative for teenagers. The FDA has set the minimum age for laser vision correction at 18 (or 21 for some procedures). One huge factor is that teenagers’ eyes might still be altering from one year to the next. For example, during high school and college years, nearsightedness might worsen a bit each year, up until the eyes “settle” into a rather final prescription around the mid-20s. When the eyes are changing so rapidly, it doesn’t make good sense to carry out LASIK on them, since the result of the surgery will not last.

You might be interested in: LASIK Eye Surgery Cost

What if contact lenses just don’t work out?

Sometimes parents let their teen use them for a trial duration, so they can show they are ready for the obligation. If it does not work out, the teenager can constantly go back to using glasses and re-try contact lenses later.

Part-time wear is likewise an alternative, and day-to-day disposables are specifically good for this.

How to Prepare for a Contact Lens Fitting

Be prepared to invest an hour or more at the eye care practitioner’s workplace

A contact lens fitting is generally performed as part of a total eye examination. So there will likely be a series of tests for all examples, such as depth understanding, near and range vision, and glaucoma.

  • Bring sunglasses

The eye care specialist may put in drops to dilate the pupils; this is so he can see the inner structures of the eye to check for diseases or other issues. After dilation, the eyes may be sensitive to light for a few hours.

Bring a list of concerns and ask all them

This is your chance to make the most of your eye care professional’s know-how! He or she will more than happy to respond to all your questions, so don’t keep back, even if you believe some of your questions may be insignificant.

  • Understand that eyeglasses may be the best option for the time being

Once in a while an eye care practitioner might feel that a teenager isn’t ready for contact lenses. Or contacts might not be right for someone’s particular prescription or lifestyle. Even if contact lenses are not the best option in the meantime, they may remain in a year or so.

Dr. D.Roberts / author of the article
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Ophthalmology: Health of Your Eyes
Comments: 1
  1. Samantha Cooper

    Most likely takes about 3 weeks before you truly get used to call lenses. When i first got contacts it took me about 30 minutes to put them in and 10 minutes to take them out. Now i can take them out in less than 20 seconds and put them in, in about 30 seconds. When you get used to them i always forget they are in and i have fallen asleep with them in numerous times since i forgot they were in my eye.

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