Astigmatism is a common refractive error that affects millions of people worldwide. It occurs when the cornea, the clear front part of the eye, or the lens inside the eye, has an irregular curvature. This irregularity causes light to focus on multiple points on the retina, resulting in blurred or distorted vision at all distances.

Astigmatism can be present from birth (congenital) or develop later in life. It often occurs in combination with other refractive errors, such as nearsightedness (myopia) or farsightedness (hyperopia). While it cannot be cured, astigmatism can be effectively corrected with the right eyeglasses, contact lenses, or refractive surgery.


Causes and Symptoms of Astigmatism

The primary cause of astigmatism is the irregular curvature of the cornea or lens. This irregularity can be hereditary or result from various factors, including:

  • Injury or eye disease
  • Excessive eye rubbing
  • Certain medical conditions, such as keratoconus

The symptoms of astigmatism may vary depending on the severity of the condition. Common signs and symptoms include:

  • Blurred or distorted vision at all distances
  • Headaches or eye strain
  • Squinting or frowning to improve vision
  • Difficulty seeing at night or in low-light conditions

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is essential to consult an eye care professional for a comprehensive eye examination.


Benefits of Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

While eyeglasses can correct astigmatism, many individuals prefer the convenience and visual clarity offered by contact lenses. Contact lenses for astigmatism provide several benefits, including:

  • Improved Visual Acuity: Contact lenses are designed to conform to the shape of your eye, providing a more precise correction for astigmatism than eyeglasses.
  • Wider Field of Vision: Unlike eyeglasses, which can create peripheral distortions, contact lenses offer a wider and more natural field of vision.
  • Enhanced Comfort and Convenience: Contact lenses are comfortable to wear and eliminate the need for constantly adjusting eyeglasses or dealing with fogging or reflections.
  • Versatility: Contact lenses are suitable for various activities, including sports, outdoor activities, and occupations where eyeglasses may be impractical or unsafe.


Types of Contact Lenses for Astigmatism

Several types of contact lenses are available for correcting astigmatism, each with its unique features and benefits. The most common options include:

1. Toric Contact Lenses

Toric contact lenses are specifically designed to correct astigmatism. They have different curvatures or powers in different meridians, which help to compensate for the irregular shape of the cornea or lens. Toric lenses are available in both soft and rigid gas-permeable (RGP) materials.

2. Multifocal Contact Lenses

If you have astigmatism and presbyopia (age-related farsightedness), multifocal contact lenses can correct both conditions simultaneously. These lenses have different powers or zones for near, intermediate, and distance vision, providing a seamless transition between viewing distances.

3. Hybrid Contact Lenses

Hybrid contact lenses combine the benefits of RGP and soft lenses. They feature a rigid gas-permeable center for correcting astigmatism and a soft surrounding skirt for improved comfort and stability.

4. Scleral Contact Lenses

Scleral lenses are large-diameter gas-permeable lenses that vault over the entire corneal surface and rest on the sclera (the white part of the eye). They can be an excellent option for individuals with irregular corneas or conditions like keratoconus, which can cause severe astigmatism.


Finding the Best Fit at Grin Eye Care

At Grin Eye Care, our experienced eye doctors understand the unique challenges posed by astigmatism. We offer a comprehensive range of contact lens options and employ advanced diagnostic tools to ensure you receive the most precise and comfortable fit.

We begin with a thorough eye examination to assess the degree and type of astigmatism, as well as any other vision problems you may have. Our optometrists will guide you through the process of selecting the most suitable contact lens type for your needs. We may trial different lenses to find the best fit, comfort, and visual clarity. After you receive your new contact lenses, we schedule follow-up appointments to monitor your progress and make any necessary adjustments for optimal vision and comfort.

If you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms of astigmatism, schedule an appointment with our vision experts at Grin Eye Care. We'll work closely with you to find the best contact lens solution, ensuring you enjoy optimal vision and comfort. Visit our office in Leawood, Olathe, Kansas, or Kansas City, Missouri. Please call (913) 829-5511 or (816) 333-8600 to book an appointment today.

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