Glasses vs. Contacts vs. Surgery
If you want to improve your vision, you have three choices: glasses, contacts, or Laser Eye Surgery. And listed from the smallest to the largest commitment, most people progress through them in that order — over many, many stress and pain-filled years.
But this guide is here to save you the time and hassle. With our reviews of each, you’ll be able to make a well-informed decision today. In not decades but minutes, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to enjoy your years with nothing less than clear and frustration-free vision!
Why good old spectacles don’t even step up to the mark
For a fair fight, all competitors need to weigh in at a similar level. As a technology that has changed little since the 13th century, spectacles don’t even get an invite.
For hundreds of years, glasses have been the vision correction method of choice. And for good reason: they’re convenient, easy to wear, and even offer some protection from dirt, dust, and wind. But they’re stuck in the past, and when it comes to living in today’s fast-paced mobile world, their disadvantages far outweigh their advantages.
Modern glasses have lighter frames than they used to, but being so delicate and slight means they’re also more easily scratched, broken, misplaced, and lost. This is a problem as when not in use, other than balancing them on your head or using a lanyard, there’s no handy way of storing them.
It wouldn’t be so bad if they worked without fault when they are on your face. But long-term wearers, especially those with high prescriptions, will know this is far from the reality. Permanent red marks on the side of your nose, foggy lenses when cooking or the temperature changes, bent arms after taking a nap, and poor peripheral vision are just a few of their endless annoyances.
It’s sad to say but it’s time for the old veteran to retire. This doesn’t mean glasses can’t still be adorned as a fashion accessory, but in terms of vision correction, their legacy should be handed over to modern vision correction methods.
How a surgical procedure is safer than contact lenses
It’s common for people to switch to contacts after becoming completely fed up with glasses or take them up alongside them as an alternate option. This can work well for a little while, but it soon becomes apparent why contacts are only suitable as a temporary vision correction method.
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For their added convenience and benefits over glasses, contacts come at a pretty heavy cost. Not only can wearing them for too long disrupt oxygen supply to the eye, resulting in dryness and irritation, but inserting them using your hands can lead to contamination and severe infections. In fact, a study carried out to look into contact lens-related complications found that 50% of patients complain of increased dryness with contact lenses.
Contact Lens Category Retention White Paper found that in a survey of 1000 contact lens wearers, 46% of patients who dropped out of wearing contact lenses were between the ages of 45 and 64 years, the age where presbyopia correction is needed, Laser Blended Vision may be an option.
According to the scientific studies, the risk of sight compromising infection is 1 in 500 for extended wear contact lenses, which is actually higher than the risk of undergoing laser eye surgery; this risk goes down by a factor of five to 1 in 2,500 for daily disposable lenses (The British Contact Lens Association). In comparison, the risk of infection with laser eye surgery is about 1 in 10,000.”
This makes contact lenses the riskiest option of all three by a big margin. And to add to their problems, as many people don’t tolerate contact lenses, they’re simply not an option for a big chunk of the population.
A treatment designed to overcome the problems of glasses and contacts
It makes sense to exhaust all your options before arriving at the treatment with the highest upfront cost. But what many don’t realise is that the cost of Laser Eye Surgery, when spread out over the long term, actually works out cheaper than contact lenses and glasses.
With the concerns over cost out the way, the other elephant in the room is the dreaded procedure. As we’ve already seen, contacts put the wearer at a higher risk than Laser Eye Surgery; the chance of a complication arising that a surgeon cannot correct is around 1 in 30,000. But wearing contact lenses doesn’t require surgery.
The reality is, if you can get over the scary sounding name, Laser Eye Surgery is a surprisingly quick and comfortable procedure. It has an eligibility rate in the high 90s, is completely pain-free, and is over in a matter of minutes. What’s more, it also corrects vision beyond your eyeglasses prescription and often results in higher visual acuity.
Who do you think wins the fight of best vision correction method? Let us know in the comments below! Or, if you’d like to book a consultation, contact one of our Patient Care Coordinators today.