While soft contacts are most common, another less familiar brand of contact lens materials exists: gas permeable (GP) contact lenses, sometimes called oxygen permeable lenses.
In reality, GP lenses are a newer technology than soft contacts, and they last longer, allow greater vision quality, and provide enhanced deposit resistance. Additionally they may also be cheaper in the long run than soft lenses. Certainly, its advised to first consult with an optometrist to decide whether GPs fit your needs. Our optometry staff can assist you in determining whether you'd be a fit for hard lenses.
Since a GP is composed of stiff material, it retains its shape well when you blink, which tends to allow for crisper vision than the typical soft lens. In addition RGPs are particularly durable. Though they will crack if stepped on, they don’t tear easily like soft lenses. Also, since they consist of substances that don't include water, proteins and lipids from your tears don’t stick to RGPs as readily as they will to soft lenses. Those of you who are extra particular about vision quality will most likely choose RGPs.
RGPs are also sometimes preferred for people with special considerations such as astigmatism, presbyopia or keratoconus, where standard contacts may not produce the desired visual acuity. GPs are also suitable for contact users after refractive surgery.
If you are considering RGP lenses, be sure to first ask your optometrist to ascertain if you really are a candidate. You never know…hard lenses might be the right answer for you!