If you have been struggling with contacts and putting off getting LASIK because you are concerned that it may not be safe, now is the time to reconsider. Not only do contacts cost you time, money, and comfort, but LASIK is actually safer than using contact lenses.
Complications with Contacts
Contact lens complications are a relatively common occurrence. Many individuals find the need for eye drops when wearing contacts, or simply feel that their eyes are dry or scratchy, especially after the prolonged wearing of contacts. However, these are only minor inconveniences and are not in themselves usually dangerous to the eyes, unless the wearer persists in rubbing at his or her eyes.
More serious complications are also unfortunately frequent, because the eye is designed to go uncovered so that it can breathe and remain healthy. Some of the more serious complications which wearing contacts can promote or cause include:
- Eye injuries (scratches and scrapes from lenses)
- Wrong prescriptions
- Contacts stuck under lid creating inflammation and granulation around lens into cyst-like tissue
- Damage to tear ducts
- Contact allergy (hypersensitivity to lens material)
- Hypoxia (eye suffocation)
While it is unlikely that you will experience all these complications, the likelihood that you will experience at least one of them significantly increases with wearing contacts. Constantly touching your eyes expose them to a much higher number of germs and contamination, but cannot be avoided when you wear contacts.
Why Your Eyes Need to be Naked
Wearing contacts for extended periods of time also has its own dangers. For example, you probably know that your eyes need to breathe, but did you know that they take in oxygen through osmosis, simply absorbing the majority of it through the surface of your eye?
Your eyes need a certain amount of internal pressure to be able to function well, but when a large portion of the surface is covered by a relatively or completely impermeable contact lens, they are prevented from absorbing oxygen. When you sleep, your eyes are less able to breathe than when your eyes are open, but contact lenses increase the difficulty substantially.
The LASIK procedure is considered a “permanent” procedure, meaning it is unlikely that you will need to have the procedure repeated later in life. This means that, after LASIK, you will not need to expose your eyes to the dangers of germs and being covered by an impermeable lens. LASIK often not only removes the need for contact lens use, but improves patients’ eyesight to better than 20/20 vision. You can find out if you are a good candidate for LASIK through a LASIK surgery consultation.
Please contact LASIK surgeon James R. Kelly, MD, today at Kelly Laser Center to learn more about your options for replacing your contact lenses with vision surgery, serving patients in New York City, Long Island and Manhattan, New York.