Elena Rossi

Elena Rossi

Contact Lens Prescription: Understanding the Basics

  Mar 18, 2024

As someone who has worn contact lenses for over 10 years, I understand the ins and outs of contact lens prescriptions pretty well. But for contact lens newbies, it can definitely be confusing trying to understand all the numbers, abbreviations, and terminology that goes into a prescription. Don’t worry, I’m here to break it all down for you!

So, in this post, I’ll start from the very basics and walk through each element of a standard contact lens prescription. My goal is to explain it in simple, easy-to-understand terms – no eye doctor jargon! I’ll also give some guidance on how to read your prescription and what the numbers mean for choosing the right contacts. Let’s dive in!

The Anatomy of a Contact Lens Prescription

At first glance, a contact lens prescription looks like a bunch of numbers, acronyms, and abbreviations jammed together. But each part contains important information that ensures you get contacts that fit and correct your vision properly.

Here’s a quick breakdown of what’s included on a typical contact lens prescription:

  • Sphere (SPH) – This measures the refractive error in your eye for nearsightedness (myopia) or farsightedness (hyperopia). It’s the number that specifies the strength or power that compensates for your blurry vision.
  • Cylinder (CYL) – This measures astigmatism, which is uneven curvature of the cornea causing distorted vision. The CYL specifies the type and amount of astigmatism correction needed.
  • Axis – The axis indicates the orientation of the astigmatism correction on the eye.
  • Base Curve (BC) – This number specifies the curvature of the contact lens. The base curve helps the lens properly fit the shape of your eye.
  • Diameter (DIA) – The diameter is the width of the contact lens, measured in millimeters. Standard diameters are from 13mm to 15mm.
  • Brand – Your eye doctor will often specify a recommended brand or manufacturer. Each has their own materials, designs, and sizing.
  • Expiration Date – Contact lens prescriptions expire after 1-2 years. This is the date you’ll need a new exam and prescription.

You can also check out more at contactlenses4us for additional guidance for first-time contact lens wearers. Wishing you the very best on your journey to clearer vision!

Choosing the Right Contacts for Your Prescription

Now that you understand all the elements on your contact lens prescription, here are some tips for choosing the right contacts:

  • Look for your total power or vision correction level – this is the SPH + CYL combined. Select lenses that match your exact prescription strength.
  • For astigmatism, you need Toric lenses aligned to your specified axis.
  • Consider your eyes and lifestyle to pick material, wearing schedule, and replacement frequency. Your eye doctor can guide you.
  • Match the base curve and diameter to what is specified. This optimizes the fit and comfort.
  • Stay within your brand options unless advised otherwise by your optometrist. Different brands aren’t interchangeable.
  • Remember contact lens prescriptions expire after 1-2 years! Don’t try to keep wearing outdated lenses.

Following these steps will help ensure you get the precise contact lenses prescribed by your eye doctor. Never hesitate to ask your optometrist for clarification or help reading your prescription. They want you to see your very best!

Expiration Date – Time For a New Prescription!

Contact lens prescriptions have an expiration date, usually 1 year from your exam date but no more than 2 years.

This is because your vision can change over time, meaning your prescription may need to be updated annually. Things like supply and solutions also shouldn’t be used beyond the expiration date. Once your prescription expires, you’ll need to get a new eye exam and updated contact lens prescription. Then you can reorder a new supply of lenses.

So be sure to check the expiration date and schedule an annual exam. Don’t try to keep wearing expired contacts – it can impact your vision and ocular health. Visit https://www.contactlenses4us.com/daily-disposable/ to update your lens today.

Still Confused? No Problem!

If after reading this you still feel a bit lost on all the numbers and terminology for contact lens prescriptions, don’t worry! I know it’s a lot of technical information.

The most important thing is to work closely with your eye doctor. They have the knowledge and experience to interpret your prescription and advise the best contact lenses for your eyes.

With a properly fitted prescription, you’ll be on your way to enjoying clear vision and comfortable wear! And overtime as you wear contacts, the prescription will make more sense and become second nature.