Do I Need An Exam To Get Contacts?

Posted on: 1 January 2015


In most cases, you will need to see an eye doctor before you can get contact lenses. This might seem like a hassle, but your eye exam is often only good for a limited period before you will no longer be able to order contacts from one of the major suppliers.

Contact Lenses Legally Require an Exam

It is required in the United States to get a prescription for contact lenses because they are considered to be medical devices by the FDA. Contacts must fit properly to the eye or else the eyes will develop health problems. This is even a concern when you wear contacts for no medical reason.

It's Best to Get Contacts Around Age 11 or Older

Even though there is no minimum age where you can wear contacts, the typical earliest age that someone begins to wear contacts is around 11. Those who are younger may not be as careful with the contacts. Parents will need to decide on whether they think their teens are responsible enough for contacts.

You'll Need the Right Contacts

Think about your ability to clean your contact lenses. Do you think that you would be able to clean your contacts every day? If not, consider getting daily disposable lenses so you can simply throw them away when you no longer need them. However, if you think you'll have time to clean your contacts regularly, getting contacts intended for two weeks will be better.

Your Eye Doctor Will Teach You How to Clean Your Contacts

Another reason why the eye doctor is an important part of getting contacts is that they will teach you how to properly wear your contacts. This begins with learning how to clean contacts with a solution. You will be taught about how the contacts dry out and what to do if you need to remove your contacts. Also, you will need to discuss what will be done if you lose your contacts. With contacts designed to be used for a few weeks, losing a contact isn't a tragedy because you'll simply switch to the next set of contacts and you'll simply need to order new contacts sooner.

How Long You Wear Your Contacts is Important

How long you wear your contacts is crucial because wearing them for too long can cause medical problems. The contacts can begin to accumulate bacteria over time since the contact lenses can act as sponges. Also, your eyes need to be able to breathe because mucus and dead cells migrate away from the eyes. An eye doctor like Dr. Joel B. Katcher will inspect your eyes and will make sure that you are taking proper care of them.