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Old 02-13-2019, 06:16 PM   #21
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I didn’t need corrective lenses at all until six years ago. At first, I could get by without wearing them while participating in my more active hobbies. But four years ago I started wearing my glasses while biking, hiking, and kayaking. Whitewater kayaking with Rx glasses is not good. I risked losing or breaking my glasses and I couldn’t see through the spots when I got splashed. So I got a prescription for contacts.

I was very nervous about sticking a finger in my eye, but after a few days of putting contacts in I got used to it. I used multifocal lenses for the first year, but switched to monovision after consulting with my optometrist and letting her know my priorities. In my case, the benefits of wearing contacts on the river far outweigh any inconvenience.

I need to figure out if I can wear my contacts to play pickleball. I had them in the first time we played and I was having trouble tracking the ball. Since then I’ve been wearing my progressive lens glasses (the competition is too tough for me to keep up if I can’t see). I’ll try the contacts again sometime when DH and I are doing drills.
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Old 02-13-2019, 06:34 PM   #22
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I’ve worn contacts for 30 years. I only wear glasses around the house, usually after I take out my contacts.

I buy disposable contacts at Costco. They work great. Never have to clean them and when they start bothering me, I swap them out for another set, which is usually every couple of weeks.

I’ve thought about Lasik, but it’s not worth the risk to me. Contacts don’t bother me and work well.
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:17 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by SheitlQueen View Post
Retired Optometrist here. Contact and glasses prescriptions are NOT the same. The contact Rx must specify power (which may or may not be different from glasses), the brand of contacts, the base curve and the diameter. You simply can't go to Amazon and order any if you are a new wearer. You have to go through a fitting period in which trial contacts are dispensed, evaluated as to fit, comfort and vision before the finalized contact prescription is dispensed. Only then and after you have been educated about contact handling and care can you order them.

It's not a good idea to have a friend or spouse coach a new wearer, who knows what kind of bad habits they have.....

My experience is like said here. I'd say it took a good 6 months from the time I made my first contact lens appointment until I was ordering a prescription of 6 months worth of lenses. My personal main problem was I have an astigmatism and I swear what ever brand I tried, either one lens or the other was wrong in some way. I'd try another of the exact same lens and it would be different still. Sometimes better, sometimes worse. What a pain once I got a prescription to change out an old pair for a new and my vision was worse than with the old lenses and I'd have to toss the new lens, open another and try again.

I wear my contacts now only when I am doing outdoor sports; fishing, kayaking, and most especially skiing, where goggles and glasses fogging when going indoors/outdoors.

Contacts are not cheap either. About 30% more than regular glasses.
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Old 02-13-2019, 07:36 PM   #24
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Success with contacts is very individual. I wanted to wear contacts so bad, I tried three times over a span of 15 years. Failed each time. I have “tight eyelids” and getting them in was a major event. Yeah, I slowly got better at it, but it was never easy. But for me, the worst part was....they ALWAYS made my eyes “itch”. I always knew they were there and they bothered me. Last time I tried them, I needed reading glasses when I had them in - but no longer needed regular glasses to read. I figured I was in glasses 50% of the time either I gave up permanently on the contacts.

My daughter, on the other hand, bought contacts, popped them in, and has never looked back.

Try them. If you can wear them, you’ll probably love them. If you can’’ll know soon enough!
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Old 02-13-2019, 08:01 PM   #25
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DH went to Costco optometrist for a new glasses prescription and I talked him into trying contacts for the first time since he was in his 20s. The eye doctor charged I think $30 more for a contacts prescription and ordered two pairs of contacts for DH to try, at no cost—one was a two-week disposable and one a 30-day disposable (you take them out every night and clean them and soak them). DH also got a new pair of glasses.

DH had no trouble with the contacts but his glasses are bifocals and the contacts were not, and he did not want to deal with reading glasses or trying the one near, one far correction system, so he never ordered the contacts after wearing them for a few days.

So if you have a Costco nearby, I suggest that route as it is very cheap to test drive contacts there.
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Old 02-13-2019, 08:13 PM   #26
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I've been a contact lens wearer for 49 years. I began in 1969 with the hard lenses that hurt and took forever to get used to (was told I had to build up calluses on the inside of my eyelids. Don't know if that was true or not.)

I'm nearsighted with astigmatism and have had mono-vision my entire life (read up close with one eye, look at distant objects with the other). Sometime in my 40s, like most people, I developed presbyopia. Since I have natural mono-vision, it was a non-event to get my RXs changed to accommodate the presbyopia. No adjustment from my perspective.

Over the years, I've tried toric soft lenses, and the soft disposables, etc. None have given me the clarity of vision and comfort that I get with hard lenses.

I've been wearing Boston EO gas-permeables for 20 years or so. They are super easy to care for. I pop them out at night, put them in a little cylindrical solution case overnight with a peroxide solution. In the morning, I put a few drops of lens solution on them and I pop them back into my eyes. Virtually no-touch. Easy-peasy. I can wear the lenses for up to a week (like when I'm camping or traveling) but I usually take them out daily.

A pair of lenses lasts me for years until I need a new RX. When I get a new RX, I buy the new lenses online for about $65 ea. (And I keep the old lens as a back-up, just in case I lose one. Sometimes my RX changes back to an old RX, so I dig back through my inventory and and clean and reuse on old lens. LBYM-style. )

At my last several eye exams, my doctor has commented that she can see the beginning of cataracts forming, but said they are in the very early stages "like someone in their early 50s" (I'm 68). She said I'll likely not need cataract surgery until I'm in my 80s. She hypothesizes that having worn contacts since age 19, with a contact lens resting right against my eye, it may have reduced exposure from UV rays to the lens within my eye (where cataracts develop).

I hope I can keep wearing contacts forever!

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Old 02-13-2019, 08:40 PM   #27
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I wear glasses almost exclusively now because I have bi-focals that makes my long range, gas permeable, contact lenses good for being outdoors with sunshine, but not so good for typing on this forum, or reading anything.

I still have the same gas permeable lens that I have owned for 15 years. They were in a fluid case that had dried up years ago. I soaked them in a cleaner solution, and then carefully cleaned them. I ended up wearing them in Jamaica at a Sandals resort (mostly with sunglasses) and was able to see the beautiful sights, and still be able to read with a pair of cheater glasses. Once in, they were still very comfortable, and I quickly got used to them again with no itching, watering, or blurriness.

The pair of contacts I had before these were rigid, hard contacts (just like glass) that I wore in a rubber molding factory for 15 years with clear safety glasses.
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Old 02-14-2019, 01:41 AM   #28
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Here’s another alternative:

While I’m a contact wearer, I’ve considered doing this as a permanent vision solution. I have a son who had lasik and he said it was the best thing that he’d done. It was a new feeling for him to wake up and see perfectly vs. having to go through the routine of putting contacts in everyday.
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Old 02-14-2019, 06:21 AM   #29
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I wear monovision contacts. One eye is for distance and the other for reading. It feels like normal 20/20 vision for me since the brain automatically attends to the source that provides clear vision for what you are looking at. If you look down at the speedometer your brain automatically uses the reading feed. If you look up at the road it switches to the distance view. If you pick up a book you just read like normal. It feels like both eyes are contributing but they are not.

The type of contacts can make a big difference. A lot of people like dailies - you wear them once and toss them. For me they were too thin. They were hard to remove and often folded up in my eyes and were irritating and difficult to find. I had slightly thicker two week lenses that were fine for years and then were replaced by a new version that were too thin and had the same problem as the dailies. I now use monthly lenses that are very comfortable and never get lost in my eyes. Note: with all of these lenses you remove them at night.

If you try contacts discuss the various types with your optometrist and give various lenses a shot. What works for others may or may not work for you.
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Old 02-14-2019, 08:24 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by SheitlQueen View Post
One thing you need to be aware of is that you are getting into the age range that you will start having problems with your near vision (presbyopia). If you don't have glasses or contacts on, no problems, but with them on you will start to have issues with your close vision if not now soon.
If that happens you have a choice between monovision (one eye set for distance and the other for near) or multifocal contacts.
If you like clear, crisp vision you may not care for either option. The other option is to put reading glasses over contacts, but that to me defeats the whole purpose of the contacts.

I use monovision and I love it. No problems at all. Tried multifocals and never could see as well with them. I actually have great distance vision but lousy close up and the monovision works perfectly for me. But not all people can adapt to it.

I would suggest going and having and exam and getting a free trial pair of contacts they will give you. If your near vision is still good, great, but be aware it will degrade in the next several years. Contacts really are not difficult to learn to get in and out, just takes a little practice and patience. Once you get it, it's easy. Most people go with some type of disposable lens now. I use dailies, put them in in the morning and throw them out at night.
Thanks so much for all the information, it's appreciated! I know I have been very lucky with my near vision...nearly all my HS friends now have "readers" and I loathe the day I too will need them. I will set up an appointment and give them a try!
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:06 AM   #31
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I tried contacts for a year or two back in the day. I am near-sighted, but not terribly so. No problems with insertion/removal. But, I found that between the need to wear sunglasses and the slight loss in visual clarity, I didn't feel that it was worth the small hassle and additional cost. I don't know about others, but my corrected vision with eyeglasses was noticeably better than the best correction with contacts. Plus I found that I missed putts out to the right until I got recalibrated.

Oh, about Lasik. My research shows that Lasik pretty consistently produces some subtle side effects, especially increased light scattering and that it rarely will produce a correction that is as good as I can get with glasses. For most people/uses these are non-issues, especially for people with very poor eyesight to begin with. But as an amateur astronomer, I really was reluctant to risk any degradation of MY imaging system since I could easily correct its shortcomings with a slight turn of a focusing knob.

Ed: Insert a comma and remove an apostrophe.
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:31 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by ExFlyBoy5 View Post
Thanks so much for all the information, it's appreciated! I know I have been very lucky with my near vision...nearly all my HS friends now have "readers" and I loathe the day I too will need them. I will set up an appointment and give them a try!
Let us know how it goes! And if you have issues in the beginning, with inserting them, or comfort, or vision, don't give up immediately. I saw that happen occasionally with people who would have been successful wearers if they had given it a little more time.
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Old 02-14-2019, 09:47 AM   #33
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I have worn contact lenses 365 days per year since 1984. When I first went to try them, the optician said I was the most difficult person to get them into their eyes that she had ever met! Now I can put them in in the dark.

About 10 years ago I started using reading glasses on top of my lenses, which was awkward and annoying. (If I didn't have my lenses in, I could read just fine, and still can.) Then a friend told me about multifocal lenses. These can fix short *and* long sight at the same time. They are amazing. It's like getting back the eyes I had when I was 10 years old.

I pay 110 Euros for six pairs of a type that are meant to last 1 month each, but in practice last me at least two months. So that's about $130 including VAT for a whole year's supply. (Plus an American friend with access to a USAF commissary gets me the cleaning products at US prices, which makes a difference.)
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:33 AM   #34
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I've been wearing the monovision lenses for about 5 years. I take them out every night and they last about 6 weeks. I will probably try the daily wear after my next exam. I only wear my glasses in the house.
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:37 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by BigNick View Post
I have worn contact lenses 365 days per year since 1984. .......
What do you do in leap years?
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:43 AM   #36
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I can't stand monovison, so I've been fitted with multi-focal contacts that provide balanced vision and work for both near and far. And daily use, so they don't ever get old or dirty or feel old, and no cleaning, and save a lot of money on solutions. All I use is a couple of drops of saline every day, and one bottle lasts for months.

I have a very difficult prescription, but lenses keep getting better and better, so I have more options than in the past.
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