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Information About Scleral Lenses from our Maple Ridge Optometrist

Woman putting on a contact lens

Contact lenses certainly aren't unusual—at Maple Ridge Eye Care, hundreds of our patients wear them daily. But what many people don't realize is that there's really no one-size-fits-all when it comes to a pair of contacts. Our optometrist team, serving Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, including Websters Corners, Silver Valley and surrounding communities, are happy to offer a variety of contact lenses—including scleral lenses—that can work well on people with so-called "hard-to-fit" eyes.

Scleral Lenses: What They Are & Why They're Effective

Standard contact lenses fit directly over your corneas (the clear domes over your colorful irises), whereas scleral lenses have a large enough diameter to actually vault over your corneas and rest on the white part of your eyes (called the sclera).  

Scleral lenses are considered rigid gas permeable lenses; they offer specific benefits for many people. For one thing, these lenses are often more comfortable since they rest on the less-sensitive scleral and conjunctival tissues (conjunctiva is a soft clear protective tissue covering the sclera and inner eyelid).

Conversely, the corneas are among the most sensitive tissues in the body and can easily become irritated by a contact lens. Instead of coming in direct contact with the lenses, your corneas are protectively housed underneath in saline solution, thus maximizing comfort. Incidentally, the reservoir of fluid between the scleral lens and cornea helps to correct for abnormalities in the corneal surface, thus helping to normalize vision.

Given their larger surface area, scleral lenses are also generally more stable compared to other contact lenses which may move around more. 

Conditions Which Can Benefit from Scleral Lenses

Other than people who simply need vision correction (e.g., for farsightedness or nearsightedness) but find regular contact lenses uncomfortable, many of our patients with certain conditions find scleral lenses quite beneficial:

  • Anyone with irregularly shaped corneas, such as people with astigmatism or keratoconus
  • People with a history of eye surgery that affects the shape and sensitivity of the corneas
  • People with chronic dry eye syndrome (keratoconjunctiva sitta) or any other condition affecting the quality or amount of tear production, including Meibomian gland dysfunction, Sjogren's syndrome

Can Scleral Lenses Be Helpful for You? Contact Our Maple Ridge Optometry Team Today to Find Out

Have you ever wondered if scleral lenses or other specialty contact lenses may be the right choice for your vision and eye care needs? Contact our optometry clinic in Maple Ridge, BC today to schedule an initial consult and eye exam with our experienced contact lens specialist, Dr. Gary Matter. We'd be happy to examine and assess your ocular health and determine which vision correction technique is right for you. Call 604-463-4469 today!