Although soft contacts are more common, another lesser-known kind of contact lens materials exists: rigid gas permeable (RGP) lenses, sometimes referred to oxygen permeable lenses.
In truth, GP lenses involve more modern technology than soft lenses, and they are longer-lasting, offer finer vision quality, and offer enhanced deposit resistance. Additionally GP lenses may also be cheaper in the long term than soft lenses. Certainly, its best to first consult with your eye care practitioner to decide whether GPs suit your lifestyle. Our optometry staff can help you figure out if hard lenses are suitable for you.
Because a GP is made of inflexible material, it retains its shape well when you blink, which tends to afford crisper vision than the typical soft lens. Additionally RGPs are especially strong. Though they can break if stepped on, they don’t easily rip like soft lenses. Further, since they're made of materials that don't include water, proteins or lipids from your tears won't adhere to RGPs as readily as they do to soft lenses. People that are especially fussy about vision quality will most likely choose GPs.
RGPs are also sometimes preferred for people that have special considerations such as astigmatism, presbyopia or keratoconus, in which soft lenses may not fit comfortably or offer enough variety. GPs are also suitable for those who need contact lenses after refractive surgery.
When considering RGP lenses, be sure to first ask your eye care practitioner to find out if you truly are a suitable candidate. Who knows…hard lenses could be the right answer for you!