Daily disposable contact lenses continue to be an increasingly important technology for our patients. The benefits of fitting daily disposable lenses are significant:
- Good for occasional use. For patients who may be part-time or occasional contact lens wearers, this modality is a logical choice to optimize the wearing experience with a new lens every time they use it.
- Minimize lens care. For those patients who may be sensitive to contact lens solutions, daily disposables offer a viable option for lens wear. Additionally, with daily disposable lenses there is no lens care required for patients. However, continue to instruct all contact lens patients to wash their hands before handling their lenses.
- Reduces non-compliance. Ideally, if we reduce the number of lens care steps, compliance should improve. And, in fact, a number of studies have demonstrated that daily disposable lens wearers are more compliant with lens replacement than their two-week or monthly replacement wearing counterparts.
Researchers demonstrated that patients who are more compliant with their lens wear replacement schedules report better subjective comfort and vision in the evening and when their lenses need replacing.
Decreases deposits. If wearers are compliant, daily disposable lenses will have the unique advantage of only one day’s wear of protein and lipid deposition. Several studies have demonstrated the surface deposition profiles that result in lenses that are not replaced on a daily basis. Surface deposits compromise comfort and vision of contact lenses, and increase significantly problems of irritation and infection. Perhaps more troubling is the risk of developing a contact lens intolerance in patients who wear lenses with excessive deposits. This makes continued lens wear difficult or impossible in some patients.
May lessen symptoms of ocular allergy. Speaking of surface deposits, our allergy sufferers are a group of patients who can be particularly aware of these concerns. Seasonal allergic conjunctivitis manifests through the exposure of sensitized conjunctival tissue to a specific allergen. Upon exposure, mast cells in the conjunctival tissue release large quantities of the preformed mediator histamine into the conjunctival tissue bed and the tear film. Additionally, the mast cells also migrate to the surface of the conjunctiva. As a result of mast cell degranulation, histamine causes the itching, redness and tissue swelling in the conjunctiva and eyelids.
How much do daily contacts cost?
Daily contact lenses typically cost $1 to $2 per day, depending on the brand and whether or not the company is currently offering any type of rebate. This means that the expense of daily contact lenses is in the range of $295 to $730 over the course of a year after rebates. One thing to consider is that because you are replacing your contact lenses daily, you will use less solution through the year. The average patient uses almost $100 worth of contact lens solution each year – a significant consideration in evaluating the “cost vs benefit” of daily wear contact lenses.