Willoughby Doctors of Optometry
130, 20728 Willoughby Town Centre Dr Langley Twp BC V2Y 0P3 (604) 371-1214
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(604) 256-7681

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Langley, BC

4 Reasons Why You Need Scleral Contact Lenses

scleral contacts next to their case

Did someone tell you that you’re not a candidate for contact lenses because of an irregularly shaped cornea or other eye issues, such as dry eye disease? Scleral contact lenses might be an option for you.

Scleral lenses fit differently in that they are placed on the sclera (the white part of your eye) as opposed to sitting directly on the cornea. This avoids irritation of the cornea and even provides extra moisture for those who suffer from dry eye disease.

Even simple eyelid blinking can irritate or injure the cornea due to friction between the eyelids and the cornea. Scleral lenses can serve as a barrier between your eyes and eyelids. This shield guards the eyes against further irritation or damage.

Before we jump into the 4 reasons scleral lenses might be worth a try, let’s talk about what they are.

What are Scleral Lenses

Scleral lenses, as opposed to standard contacts, are placed over the entire cornea, leaving a gap between the lens and the corneal surface before resting on the white part of your eye (your sclera). 

Scleral lenses are gas permeable (GP). GP lenses allow more oxygen to reach the eye’s surface. This lowers the risk of hypoxia-related eye problems (reduced oxygen supply).

These large-diameter gas permeable lenses provide the same benefits as traditional GP lenses when compared to soft contacts, including:

  • Improved vision
  • More durability
  • Easier to handle
  • Complications are less likely

They are ideal for people who have difficult-to-fit eyes, astigmatism, keratoconus, severe dry eye, or who simply want more comfort when wearing contact lenses because they are individually fitted to your eye.

Scleral lenses are classified into three types:

  • Corneo-scleral lenses and semi-scleral lenses are the smallest scleral lenses and are placed on the cornea and sclera of the eye.
  • Mini-scleral lenses are scleral lenses that are in the middle of the size spectrum. They form an arch over the cornea and are located on the front of the sclera.
  • Full scleral lenses are the largest scleral lens option, with the widest arch over the cornea and the most space between the lens and the cornea.

Despite their size, scleral lenses are comfortable. Because of their size and rigidity, first-time scleral lens users tend to worry that the lenses won’t be comfortable. Despite being significantly larger than typical soft lenses, scleral lenses are just as comfortable, if not more so.

4 Reasons Why You Need Scleral Contact Lenses

The advantages of scleral contact lenses make them a prominent and satisfying option for many patients seeking clear and comfortable vision.

Solution for Keratoconus

Keratoconus is a condition in which the cornea thins and progressively bulges into a cone shape. Vision is distorted by a cornea with a cone shape, which can also make you more sensitive to glare and light.

Although both eyes are typically affected by keratoconus, one eye is frequently more affected than the other. People usually start to experience symptoms between the ages of 10 and 25. The condition could deteriorate gradually for ten years or more.

To correct vision problems caused by keratoconus and other corneal irregularities, scleral lenses essentially replace the irregular cornea with an optical surface that is smooth.

graphic depicting two eyes from the side, demonstrating a healthy eye and another with keratoconus

Dry Eye Relief

Scleral lenses can offer a great deal of comfort to dry eye patients even though they are typically used to treat corneal irregularities and refractive errors.

These specifically made lenses rest on the sclera rather than the cornea, vaulting over it. The continuous moist environment that the liquid reservoir between the lens and cornea creates protects the cornea and offers comfort to people who have dry eyes.

Solution for Hard-To-Fit Eyes

Patients with an irregularly shaped cornea, whether caused by:

  • Natural causes
  • Eye conditions such as keratoconus or astigmatism
  • Complications from surgery (such as LASIK)

may have vision issues that can’t be solved with regular soft contact lenses. Scleral contact lenses should be considered as another option because of their comfortable fit and vision improvement.

Promote Healing

Scleral lenses do more than just correct vision. They also shield the eye by immersing it in an oxygen-permeable fluid-filled chamber. 

This setup not only provides the eye with the moisture and oxygen it requires to stay healthy, but it also protects it from external threats or irritants. As a result, scleral lenses are excellent for promoting ocular surface healing following a corneal transplant, for example.

Get Fitted for Scleral Lenses in Langley, BC

Scleral lenses serve three functions for patients at once: they correct vision, protect the eye, and provide therapeutic lubrication. These factors can help people with irregularly shaped corneas or eye disease improve their quality of life.

Scleral lenses are made to your eye doctor’s exact specifications to provide the best possible vision, eye health, and comfort. At Willoughby Doctors of Optometry we want to help you in finding the best solution for your eye health and vision. Book your appointment today.

Our Practice

We would love to meet you in person.

Drop by our office and say hello. We require 24 hrs notice for cancelled appointments or a reasonable $50 no show fee will apply.

Willoughby Doctors of Optometry

130 - 20728 Willoughby Town Centre
Langley, BC V2Y 0P3

Contact Information

Phone: 604-371-1214
Fax: 604-371-1215
Email: [email protected]

Clinic Hours

Monday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 9:00 AM - 7:30 PM
Friday 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Sundays Closed

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