toric contacts

These are contacts designed to help with astigmatism. Normally, the cornea (the clear window that makes up the front of our eye) is perfectly round like a basketball.  However, in people with astigmatism, their eye is shaped more like a football … that is to say, the cornea is steep along one axis and shallower along another. Everyone has a little bit of astigmatism – after all, we are not perfectly round creatures.  However, some people have a significant amount of astigmatism and this irregularity can cause some blur to the vision. Astigmatism is relatively easy to fix in glasses. The “football correction” can be ground into a pair of glasses to perfectly offset the eye’s football shape. This same process is trickier to pull off with contacts. The football shape can be melted into a plastic contact lens, but contacts have a tendency to spin on the surface of the eye. To counter this, toric contacts are weighted with a thicker bottom so that they line up properly.  While this works well, there is no doubt that toric contacts are trickier to fit than a regular contact lens prescription.

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Dr. Timothy Root is a practicing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon in Daytona Beach, Florida. His books, video lectures, and training resources can be found at:

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