While you may be more accustomed to soft contact lenses, a second, less familiar kind of contact lenses exists: gas permeable (GP) contact lenses, sometimes called oxygen permeable lenses.
In truth, RGP lenses are a newer technology than soft contacts, which are longer-lasting, offer finer vision quality, and provide increased resilience. Additionally GP lenses can also be cheaper in the long term than soft lenses. Certainly, its best to first discuss with your eye doctor to decide whether RGPs fit your needs. Our optometry office can help you determine whether you’re a candidate for RGP lenses.
Since a GP is made of stiff material, it retains its form well when you blink, which tends to afford sharper vision than the typical soft lens. In addition GPs are particularly durable. Although they can crack if stepped on, they don’t easily rip like soft lenses. Further, since they consist of substances that don't contain water, proteins and lipids from your tears don’t stick to RGPs as readily as they do to soft lenses. Those of you who are especially fussy about quality of vision will most likely choose GPs.
GPs are also sometimes preferred for those that have certain conditions such as astigmatism, presbyopia or keratoconus, where standard contacts may not fit properly or provide enough variety. RGPs are also preferable for those who need contact lenses after refractive surgery.
If you're thinking about hard lenses, be sure to first ask your optometrist to determine if you definitely are a suitable candidate. Who knows…hard lenses could be the right match for you!