There have long been two families of contact lenses; hard and soft. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. Both styles of lenses are commonly used by millions of satisfied contact lens wearers. So what exactly is the new hybrid contact lens and is it for you?
Soft contact lenses have long been a favorite by those seeking instant comfort and ease of use. A soft lens is typically larger, with the edges extending out to the white of the eye, beyond the cornea. This makes for a very comfortable lens that can be worn for many hours. One of the main drawbacks with soft lenses is that they provide soft vision. In short, the lens material is soft and relies on tears to maintain it’s consistency, the vision is prone to intermittent blur and general fuzziness.
Hard or gas permeable contact lenses take the cake when it comes to best achievable vision. Because the material is more firm, the lenses maintain their sharp optical acuity. There has never been a question that best visual acuity via a contact lens is achieved with a gas permeable lens. So what has been the drawback with conventional gas perms? The answer is comfort. Gas perm lens wearers need to go through a short adaptation period in order for the lenses to become comfortable.
Recently, hybrid contact lenses have been making a huge splash in the lens world. Hybrid lenses are composed of a gas permeable center for improved optics and a soft lens skirt for maximum comfort. But how well do these lenses merge the benefits of the two technologies together?
For starters, the gas permeable center is manufactured with a very high oxygen permeable material. In short, your corneas will breath easy even after a long day of wear. The lenses have been approved for prescriptions with up to 5 diopters of astigmatism, so they will certainly correct a wide variety of prescriptions. And with gas perm optics, many people are sure to be very happy with what they see.
How about the soft lens skirt? The skirt comes in varying curves so your eye care provider can most likely find a great fit for you. Remember, the benefit of the soft portion is comfort. In certain cases, it may also aid in lens centration which will help to improve vision.
When caring for your hybrid lens, you want to treat it like a soft lens. Soft lens cleaner and solution is highly recommended. Of course, you will want to follow the exact directions as prescribed by your eye care provider.
In most cases, hybrid contact lenses are a home run. So if you are looking for the sharpest acuity matched with the best comfort, ask your eye care provider about hybrid contact lenses.