The Pros and Cons of Daily Wear Contacts: Should You Make the Switch?
Daily disposable lenses, or daily wear contacts, have only been on the market since 1995. They’re still a relatively new product, but they’re gaining popularity all over the world.
If you’re used to weekly or monthly contacts, the flexibility that daily disposables offer might intrigue you. But are they right for you? Read our pros and cons list to find out.
Pros of Daily Wear Contacts
Our consumerist society has given birth to many disposable items. From plastic water bottles to paper towels, our homes and bins are filled to the brim. What we’re doing is paying for convenience over quality. But when it comes to eye health, quality should take a front seat. So how do daily wear contacts measure up?
When compared, monthly contacts are more robust than dailies. Dailies may seem more flimsy, but they come with their own set of benefits. Because they are a lot thinner, daily disposables provide a higher level of comfort for the wearer. This thin construction also allows the lenses to maintain a high water content. This means that they usually remain moist throughout the day.
You might want to test a pair of daily wear contacts and then a pair of monthlies to see how they feel on your eyes. Quality is usually dependent on the brand and cost. You can’t go wrong with a more expensive pair of daily disposables if they feel good.
Most people choose daily disposable contacts because they are hassle-free. You open a new pack in the morning, pop them in and off you go. They are sterile and low maintenance.
With daily wear contacts, there’s no need for reminders. The only time you need to think about them is when it’s time to remove them at night. Also, wearing them past their end date is practically impossible unless you sleep in them, which is a big no-no.
Say goodbye to cleaning solutions, new contact cases and all the other extra costs associated with monthly contacts. This also makes daily disposable contacts more convenient when traveling. While you might be paying a bit more for the lenses upfront, you’ll save on cleaning and maintenance in the long-run.
Daily wear contacts are healthier for your eyes. Each morning, you get to put in a sterile pair of contacts. This means you don’t need to worry about whether or not you cleaned them properly the night before. Since the contacts are sterile, the risk of eye infection is non-existent. That is, if you’ve thoroughly washed your hands before handling your lenses.
Our eyes receive the needed oxygen straight from the air around us. Due to their thin construction, daily disposables permit more airflow to the eye than other types of contacts do. This translates to less dryness and irritation. People with sensitive eyes or allergies should also opt for daily disposables. In fact, around 30% of lens wearers choose daily wear contacts.
Your entire family can wear daily disposable contacts. Think of your teenagers struggling with their daily routines. Will they be responsible enough to clean their monthly contacts each night? While they might be able to do this sometimes, it’s important to form a routine to avoid ocular issues. Daily wear contacts take the maintenance part right out of the equation.
Cons of Daily Wear Contacts
As with any good thing, there are a few downsides to wearing daily disposable contacts.
Depending on how often you use them, daily disposables can be more expensive than extended wear lenses. But companies are developing new technologies faster than ever before. This means dailies are becoming cheaper without compromising on quality.
Remember: you won’t be spending money on lens cleaning and maintenance. This can balance out cost vs quality.
Temptation to Reuse
After a comfortable day's wear, you might feel tempted to try and squeeze another day in. Research shows that it's not worth the risk. A study about contact lens habits found that contamination could occur this way. Regardless of the type of contacts you choose, wearing them past their expiration date is never a good idea.
The best daily disposable lenses are now high in water content and allow your eyes to breathe. Still, some people complain of dryness when using daily disposables. If you have sensitive eyes, try rewetting drops or fake tears. There are also dailies with special technology made especially for dry eyes.
Not as Many Choices as Monthly Contacts
Monthly contacts work well for all sorts of eye conditions. Contact lens users with non-standard prescriptions might find it difficult to get matching dailies. In this case, keeping your monthly contacts until the right daily wear contacts are developed is the best option.
Standard of Vision
Some users report better acuity with extended wear contacts than with dailies. This could just be personal preference, so all you have to do is try them out for yourself. Get a couple of sample pairs each and compare the two experiences. You’ll be able to make your own decision based on comfort and convenience.
As with any disposable product, it's always good to think about environmental impact. The contact packaging is likely to be recyclable. But the blister packs and lenses are not. The lenses are not made of a plastic that quickly biodegrades.
Still, there is good news on the horizon. Contact lens waste represents only a tiny fraction of our yearly personal waste. When compared to glasses, contacts come out ahead. It would take about 4 years’ worth of daily disposables to reach the number of materials that go into an average pair of specs.
Companies are also working towards full recycling solutions for contacts. You might soon be able to reduce your carbon footprint even more by recycling your contacts too.
Daily Wear Contacts: To Buy, or Not to Buy?
The bottom line is that daily wear contacts are high quality, affordable and hassle-free. Consider the benefits and how these fit into your daily lifestyle. Remember, you can get samples and try them out to see what you like. Browse top quality brands and talk to your eye doctor to find the best option for you.