Orthokeratology For Adults | The Safer Alternative To LASIK
Do you want to be glasses and contacts-free but don’t qualify for laser eye surgery? Or, perhaps you’re concerned with surgery-related complications and desire a safer option? Imagine waking up every morning with clear and sharp vision. Thanks to these specialty lenses, you don’t have to wear glasses or contacts during the day, and best of all — it’s surgery-free.
Orthokeratology, or ortho-k lenses, are specialized custom contact lenses that gently reshape your cornea, correcting your vision while you sleep. This results in a full day of lens-free, accurate and clear vision. Ortho-k is ideal for those with myopia, or nearsightedness, but can also be used in cases of farsightedness. What’s more, it can also be adjusted to compensate for astigmatism. Ortho-k is a simpler, more user-friendly and safer method of correcting vision than laser surgery.
How Ortho-K Works
Ortho-k lenses are custom-fitted, gas-permeable contact lenses meant to be worn overnight to gently reshape the cornea (surface of the eye) and correct vision according to your refractive needs. For best results, the lenses should be worn every night. After removing your lenses, you can achieve 20/20 vision all day long, though results may vary depending on eye shape and refractive error.
The first step is to get fitted by your optometrist. It is important to note that not all eye doctors who handle standard contact lenses can fit ortho-k lenses. At our practice, the highly-trained Dr. Colleen Mitchell and Dr. Adrianna Hempelmann regularly fits these lenses for children and adults alike.
Why Ortho-K Is Safer Than LASIK
For those seeking a long-term solution to their vision problems, laser corrective surgery might sound like a good option — though it comes with the risk of complications. The side-effects following corrective laser surgery (i.e. LASIK) may include severe dry eye, blurred vision, under or overcorrection, and eye infections.
Unlike LASIK, Ortho-k has almost no side effects and has been helping people see safely and comfortably since 1994. These FDA approved lenses were originally developed as a corrective method to control myopia progression in children, though it is equally effective in correcting adult vision.
Ortho-k is also an excellent option for those not eligible for laser surgery, such as people with very thin or irregular corneas, dry eyes, unstable vision, or high refractive error. People who don’t want the hassle of day-time contacts, such as athletes or workers exposed to gusty winds, should consider ortho-k as a long-term vision solution.
Furthermore, ortho-k is completely reversible, meaning, you simply stop using them and go back to wearing your corrective lenses. If you stop wearing the ortho-k lenses, the cornea will revert back to its original shape. Laser surgery, on the other hand, permanently removes a portion of the cornea.
Why Choose Ortho-K
Though more expensive than traditional contact lenses, ortho-k is a cheaper option than corrective laser surgery. These custom lenses provide clear vision throughout the waking hours without changing the integrity or quality of the cornea (as opposed to corrective laser surgery). Furthermore, with refractive surgeries, one may require follow-up surgery, which brings yet more potential risks and costs.
As mentioned above, Ortho-k lenses are also an excellent option for sports-enthusiasts or athletes as all-day clear vision removes the need to wear any prescription glasses (which may get broken during play) or contacts, that can be at times irritating to the eyes.
Let us help you explore a safer, surgery-free alternative, by providing you with clear vision without the need for daytime contact lenses or glasses. If you would like to have an initial consultation or simply receive more information, contact the Blacksburg Eye Associates to book your appointment today.
Dr. Colleen Mitchell and Dr. Adrianna Hempelmann serves patients in Blacksburg, Radford, Christiansburg, New River Valley, and throughout Virginia.