We continue to get asked, “How much do contact lenses cost?” Getting contact lenses can be confusing and scary. So we assembled the top 10 things you need to know before buying contact lenses. So enjoy this list and if you have questions that we did not address, feel free to post them in the comments section.
How much do contact lenses cost?
For near sighted people, most soft contact lenses will cost between $20 to $30 for a 6-pack of lenses. If you replace your contacts approximately every 2 weeks, you will need about 5 boxes (30 lenses) per eye or a total of 10 boxes per year. This comes to an annual contact lens cost of roughly $250 to $275. You also need to budget for annual checkups and lens solutions.
What does a contact lens do?
A contact lens is a thin lens designed to fit over the cornea and usually worn to correct defects in vision. If you want to ditch the glasses and do not want to get Lasik, contact lenses might be for you. You need to start by visiting an Optometrist to get an exam and then a fitting. Only optometrists, contact lens opticians and medical practitioners like an Opthalomgist can fit contact lenses.
How much do contact lenses cost when I am getting an eye exam?
Many people think that a vision exam includes a contact prescription. An average contact lens fitting fee is between $125 to $150. We also recommend getting retinal imaging scan from a machine like Optos. This is an HD-quality scan and picture of your retina. It will cost you about $30 more but well worth it. Your optometrist can keep it on file so it can serve as your baseline. This helps them detect changing medical conditions each year.
What is a contact lens fitting?
The purpose of the exam is to make sure you are a good candidate for wearing contacts. Your doctor will ask about your vision goals and estimate the frequency of use. Your optometrist will administer various tests such as a corneal topography. This test maps out the different aspects of your cornea. They will also do a slit lamp examination to check for any eye health problems. Once you discuss contact lens options, they will provide you with diagnostic contact lenses. They will do a final slit lamp and a visual acuity test to check how well your lens fits. Finally, they will teach you how to insert, remove and disinfect the lenses.
Are contact lenses right for me?
Your local Optometrist will be able to tell you that. They will also give you trial set to see if you like them. They will be uncomfortable while you get used to them, but soon they should feel completely normal. Once you’ve tried the lenses, you and your doctor can decide together whether contact lenses are right for you.
How do astigmatic contact lenses work?
Astigmatism is a condition where the light entering the eye is not refracted equally. Due to differences in the curvature of the cornea, the light has two focal points from two axes often causing blurred near and distance vision. Contact lenses for astigmatism or toric contact lenses are designed to help. Soft lenses, rigid gas permeable lenses and bifocal or multifocal lens designs are all available to correct astigmatism. These lenses are also known as ‘toric’ lenses and are available from most major contact lens manufacturers.
Finding an eye doctor for contact lenses
We recommend asking family and friends for a good Optometrist. Ask about their experience and comfort level. In general, we prefer an independent doctor of Optometry. These doctors can not only handle your contact lens and eyeglass prescription, but also most eye health issues. Most Optometrist will refer you to an Ophthalmologist should they detect any serious problems.
Is it better to wear contacts or glasses?
Most users will tell you to get both. Eyeglasses require very little cleaning and maintenance. They are also cheaper. But they can also be a pain. Once your contact lenses are in, you can live a more active lifestyle.
How do colored contact lenses work?
Colored contact lenses have become very popular especially among women. They are designed to mimic the natural look of your eye color. It basically recolors your iris. Some color contacts feature a series of tiny colored dots and radially arranged colored lines and shape to help the lenses look more natural on the eye. The center of the lens, the part that lies over your pupil, is clear so you can see. Color contacts with opaque tints come in a wide variety of colors, including hazel, green, blue, violet, amethyst, brown and gray.
Is it cheaper to buy contact lenses online?
Believe it or not, it is NOT cheaper to buy contacts online. Most eye doctors get great pricing and patient rebates on contact lenses that they sell. Most optometrists do not mark up their contacts that much, so the end cost to you can be less than found online. Be upfront and ask your doctor. Many will show you what they charge compared to 1-800 Contacts or another online retailer. Make sure that you never buy contact lenses online from an overseas website. These areas are often unregulated and could increase the risk of eye infections, corneal abrasion and even corneal ulcers.