What to Expect - Eye Examination and Contact Lens Fitting


To get contact lenses, you need to see an Eye Care Professional (optometrist, contact lens optician) to have your eyes examined and get a prescription. A contact lens fitting takes a little longer than a regular eye examination, so you need to reserve enough time - plan to spend about 60-90 minutes at our practice. When you make your appointment, be sure to let the practice know that you are interested in contact lenses and would like an appointment for a fitting in addition to the eye examination.

Here's what you can expect at your examination and fitting:

Consultation

Why do you want contact lenses? How do you plan to use them? And what do you want them to do for you?

Examination

A complete evaluation of your eye health and vision.

Contact Lens Fitting

Measuring your eye surface to evaluate vision, fit and comfort - plus trying on lenses.

Contact Lens Instruction

Learning how to handle and care for your lenses, including inserting, removing, cleaning, and storing.

Getting Your Lenses

Taking your lenses (and care products) home.

Follow-Up

Returning in one to two weeks so your Eye Care Professional can see how you're doing with your lenses.


Consultation


Your contact lens optician will talk to you about your general health, and about your eyes; then you'll be asked what your goal is with wearing contact lenses. To see better close up? See better far away? Change the colour of your eyes? Your answer can be definite: "I want to see well far away, and I want to have blue eyes," or you can answer in general terms: "I'm not sure what I want. I just know I don't see very well and I don't like glasses." Our qualified opticians will know how to proceed with the examination based on your answers.

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Examination


Next, you'll begin the actual eye examination. This consists of a series of tests to determine your eye health and your current vision. Our optometrists (ophthalmic opticians) will test your eyes together and/or one at a time for a number of different things: general vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, muscle actions, eye pressure and so on. At the end of this examination, your Eye Care Professional can provide you with a prescription for glasses - but there's more to come to get contact lenses.

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Contact Lens Fitting


Eyes come in different sizes and shapes, so you need to have an accurate 'fitting' to make sure your lenses will fit your eyes properly. To do this, your Eye Care Professional will take special measurements of your eye and its surface, checking for curvature and other factors that will affect how your lenses fit. You'll also be asked if your eyes tend to be dry (how dry your eyes are is very important in determining which type of contact lenses is best for you. There are special lenses for people who experience eye dryness.) Finally, your cornea will be carefully examined to make sure there aren't any problems that could make it hard for you to wear contact lenses.

Next, trial lenses will be applied to your eyes so your Eye Care Professional can see how well they fit. It takes time for lenses to 'settle' on your eyes, so you may wait 10 or 15 minutes after the lens has been inserted before the Eye Care Professional checks the fit. You may need to try on more than one pair before you get it just right. After your Eye Care Professional is satisfied that your lenses fit, feel comfortable and give you good vision, you'll be ready to learn how to take care of them.

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Contact Lens Instruction


Learning to apply (and remove) your lenses is very easy. Most people get the hang of it right away, and even the most nervous patient can expect to have it down pat within a week. Your Eye Care Professional (or a member of their staff) will teach you how to handle and care for your lenses. You'll also get written instructions to refer to - and you should always call your Eye Care Professional if you have any questions.

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Getting Your Lenses


Many times, your Eye Care Professional will have your contact lenses in stock and you'll be able to take them home the same day. If your lenses need to be ordered, you'll usually get them in a week or less.

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Follow-Up


After your contact lens fitting is complete, you will need to return for follow-up visits so your Eye Care Professional can make sure your lenses continue to fit well, that you're seeing well and that your lenses are comfortable. Thereafter, plan to have your eyes and contact lenses examined at least once per year. If you notice any changes in your vision or eyes, you should call your Eye Care Professional right away.

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