Any person who wants to wear contact lenses must first seek professional help either from an ophthalmologist or an optometrist to determine his particular optical needs. After this step, a person who wants to wear contact lenses has to choose which type of lenses he would be most comfortable using.
There are basically six types of contact lenses, depending on the materials of which they were made and on the time period for which they can be worn.
The first type is the daily-wear soft lenses, which are made of soft, flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes. This kind of lenses is recommended for those who lead active lifestyles who do not have time for a strict and careful cleaning regimen. This kind is also very comfortable to wear due to its very short adaptation period.
The second type of contact lenses is the everyday-use disposable soft contact lenses. These lenses can only be used once. They are specifically designed to last only for one day. They are supposed to be disposed at night and replaced by another pair of lenses the next day. These lenses may be expensive because they cannot last for a long time and wearers must replace them every day, but this kind of lenses does have many benefits. For one, it requires no amount of lens care and it assures that one uses fresh and clean lenses every time. Thus, this kind of lenses will suit one who has a very active lifestyle.
The third kind of contact lenses is the extended-wear soft contact lenses, which can be worn overnight. Like daily-wear soft lenses, these are made of soft and flexible plastics which allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes. These may suit one who is very busy to be bothered by constant replacement and cleaning of contact lenses, since they are usually be prescribed for up to seven days of wear, even without removal.
The fourth kind id called extended-wear disposable soft lenses. These are soft lenses which can last for only one to six nights. These are just like the second type, only they last a little bit longer. The benefits are the same – they require little or no cleaning at all.
The fifth type is the frequent and planned replacement soft lenses. These are soft or extended wear lenses which are replaced based on a predetermined schedule. These lenses assure fresh and clean contact lenses when replaced and they provide flexibility as the time for replacement varies according to the personality of the user.
The last type is the Rigid Gas Permeable lenses which are made of slightly flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes. Their most outstanding feature is that they can last for a long period of time, usually for one to two years, although they are also available in daily-wear versions.
Whichever type of contact lenses one chooses to wear, the most important thing to remember is to follow the regimen needed by that particular pair of lens so that the eyes remain healthy and infection-free.