Toric contact lenses is the term that is given to lenses that are used to correct people who have astigmatism. People with astigmatism suffer from blurred vision because of an irregular shaped cornea or lens, which means that light enters the eye at an incorrect angle and the image is not formed on the retina.
Toric lenses have a special design because unlike regular lenses to treat short or long-sightedness, they should not rotate on the eye because toric lenses need to correct both the astigmatism and the short or near-sightedness.
In recent years, the number of different types of toric lenses has increased considerably with the use of new materials such as silicone hydrogel contact lenses. In fact, all the major contact lens manufacturers have brought out a wide range of lenses so now, for example, toric lens wearers can choose from a large number of brands and also have the convenience of daily disposable toric lenses. It is even possible to get coloured toric lenses and multifocal toric lenses.
The fact that correcting astigmatism with contact lenses requires the lenses to remain still on the eye is also the reason why gas permeable lenses (sometimes abbreviated as RGP) are also favoured by some eye care professionals. RGP lenses are considered to provide slightly sharper visual acuity although the wearing experience is different. This is an issue that should be discussed with your optician.
However, new advances in materials technology combined with improved lens designs in effect mean there is very little difference between soft disposable toric lenses and RGP lenses especially for someone with relatively mild astigmatism.
Toric contact lenses in a nutshell
- Correct astigmatism
- Have a different lens design to regular contact lenses
- Should not rotate on the eye
- Large choice of lenses including daily disposable, monthly, coloured and multifocal lenses
- Some eye care professionals recommend RGP lenses to correct astigmatism